St Francis Bay Security Update

September 2021

Welcome to our first St Francis Bay security update. The security updates will be regular communication to inform residents and homeowners of any relevant information regarding St Francis Bay security.

In St Francis, our security is controlled by the St Francis Community Police Forum (CPF).

The CPF manages the cooperation of SAPs, the private security companies, the neighbourhood watch groups, and the municipality law enforcement units.

In St Francis Bay, the cameras are funded by the Special Rating Area (SRA), which is a Non-Profit Company (NPC).

The cameras are monitored and maintained by Atlas Security, with Calibre Security as the local reaction force. 

There are always many questions about the reliability and value of monitored CCTV coverages as opposed to AI coverage. The limit to CCTV coverage has always been about the camera to operator ratio. This is further played against the demand of covering as much area as possible, which could result in too many screens and not enough eyes to cover them all. Then there is also the element of fatigue, which needs to be taken into account. 

Finally, providing enough eyes to monitor all cameras 24/7 would make this service extremely expensive and unnecessary, given the development of AI software.

Over recent years, AI and intelligent analytics has taken much of the monitoring and detecting legwork away from the monitoring roles of operator staff.

Through the use of intelligent analytics, most of the cameras we have in operation can now monitor and detect: 

  • An object that has been left behind
  • Removed object
  • Stopped vehicle
  • Movement in the wrong direction
  • Inconsistent movement patterns
  • Increase in queue numbers
  • Increase in people count
  • Licence plate recognition

These monitoring and detecting elements will be extended further as technology improves. 

In the first 6 months of 2021, there were the following activations in St Francis Bay.

  • Licence Plate Recognition (LPR) reads: 2,168,932
  • Positive LPR Alerts: 402
  • Analytical activations: 6,831
  • Times Calibre was dispatched: 474
  • SAPS request for footage: 41

Some of the successes over the last two months

  • Paint thief arrested on 14/7.
  • Bicycle thief arrested 09/08.
  • Three Jeep vehicle thieves arrested, jeep retrieved 11/08.
  • Three copper pipe thieves apprehended 14/0  
  • Two youngsters breaking poles in Marina Village were apprehended and handed over to Marina Village Chairperson.
  • Shots fired in the village, and after a description was obtained by Calibre, Atlas was able to trace the reg number, which was handed to SAPS.
  • A wallet was dropped at the Spar Centre and inadvertently handed to an incorrect person. That person was traced through the cameras via the reg number, and Calibre could trace the person and get the wallet back.

In total, there were 105 reactions over the last two months. 

There is much security in place, but it also helps if citizens remain vigilant and keep their eyes on our streets, neighbours, and friends.  

There are several local WhatsApp safety groups, and in some areas, there are street WhatsApp safety groups. These groups are all good and effective if they are reserved as safety channels and are not used for general chatter.