ANPR Rules – How is ANPR used by Local Authorities?

Apr 12, 2023

ZatPark - smart city - traffic light trails on a highway at sunset in a city

ANPR systems are commonly used in the parking industry but there are a variety of other uses for ANPR camera systems. The two primary uses by Government organisations are traffic control and law enforcement. 

ANPR parking systems for traffic control

Local authorities and Government agencies can use an ANPR management system to monitor moving traffic. These can be integrated with other systems to ensure traffic flows freely in congested areas. 

ANPR-enabled systems can;

  • perform average speed checks
  • predict travel times 
  • monitor traffic flow 
  • monitor bus lane usage 
  • monitor congestion zones 
  • monitor traffic moving through low-emission zones 
  • perform toll collection 
  • monitor box junctions
  • no left/right turns
  • one-way streets
  • residential access restrictions.

ANPR for law enforcement

The UK Police use the national network of ANPR cameras to detect, deter and disrupt criminality. The Police use ANPR for; 

  • checking if a vehicle is insured 
  • checking if a vehicle is taxed (this can also be performed by some local authorities) 
  • identify stolen or suspicious vehicles 
  • stopping terrorism, major and organised crime incidents 
  • supporting Government security agencies
  • gathering case evidence for major, and organised crime.

ANPR rules for parking operations

Over recent years, private parking companies have increasingly started to turn to ANPR technology to solve their enforcement problems.

To use an ANPR parking system for enforcement vehicles must be identified by the ANPR car park system which performs a vehicle details check via the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) database. Every ANPR enforcement company must have a contract with DVLA to be able to check driver and vehicle details. 

ANPR car park management companies follow best practice guidelines when issuing contravention notices. The DVLA stipulate that ANPR images and data must be checked manually to verify that a parking or moving traffic violation has occurred. Manual checks must be made on every identified contravention made by an ANPR parking control system before contravention notices are issued to the motorist. 

Checking ANPR-identified contraventions is necessary but often time-consuming. Zatpark’s advanced ANPR checker improves efficiency by reducing the time needed to manually check ANPR readings. Zatpark ANPR delivers close to 100% accuracy.

Some of the reasons why parking management organisations are switching to ANPR include:

  • ANPR cameras are easy to set up and provide consistent data to parking enforcement applications
  • ANPR systems have relatively low operating costs
  • ANPR also reduces the need to employ as many on-site enforcement staff
  • Parking management ANPR technology typically delivers high levels of accuracy when reading number plates

We discuss the growing use of ANPR car park management in our webinar – Is ANPR the future of enforcement?.

You can learn how ANPR cameras can be used for secure access in our article – ANPR access control.

We cover what ANPR is and the different types of ANPR in our article – ANPR parking systems.

Read the Cornwall Council Case Study

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