How the Los Angeles MTA Monitors 73 Miles
Los Angeles Metropolitan Transport Authority (MTA) upgrades security surveillance with Infinova PTZ domes and fiber optics
Solution: Infinova PTZ domes, discrete day/night cameras and fiber optics
Los Angeles is a city that was designed to be "car friendly," but not many of the millions of drivers who ply the city's famous freeways would agree that it remains that way, especially after spending hours fighting the congestion that can cripple their commute. After years of debate, L.A. finally began work on a subway system in the mid 80's and, in 1990, opened its first line - the Blue Line - that connects downtown with Long Beach. Several additional lines and extensions have been added, the most recent of which was the Gold Line in 2003. Construction of other extensions continues.
Besides being a construction challenge, there was also a security challenge. The L.A. MTA (Metropolitan Transport Authority) is responsible for security in the system. About 300,000 riders per day and 73 miles of lines fall under its watch. The staff of less than 40 who monitor the entire system 24/7 (about eight staffers at any given time) is hard pressed to keep up. The MTA knew it would need to take advantage of whatever automated features it could to extend the capabilities of its thinly stretched monitoring staff.
With numerous pre-sets, patterns and other features, its Infinova-based video surveillance system has delivered. Over 450 dome cameras were installed up and down the lines. The cameras monitor platforms, rails and other facilities throughout the system. These high-speed PTZ (pan-tilt-zoom) domes utilize up-the-coax control data, sending data streams from the control site back to the cameras through the same coaxial cable used to transmit video. This feature allowed the MTA to make use of existing coaxial cables that connected its many fixed cameras that were being replaced by the PTZ domes, greatly reducing installation costs.