Germany To Introduce The Monocam
Against Driver Distraction
8 MAY - ROADPOL initiated the introduction of high-tech anti-phone cameras to Germany.
The German state of Rhineland-Palatinate is to become the first in the country to introduce the Monocam devices against driver distraction.
The success is coming after ROADPOL former President and current Executive Committee member Volker Orben, himself representative of the Police in Rhineland-Palatinate, presented the technology to the government and convinced them to consider the idea.
Following a success of a pilot project in Trier, the German federal state of Rhineland-Palatinate intends to install "Monocams" - mobile speed cameras that can detect if drivers are using their smart phones - across its territory. "The pilot project proves that Monocams have a preventive effect and can be used to improve road safety in Rhineland-Palatinate. That is why we want to be the first federal state to introduce them" said Michael Ebling, Minister of the Interior of Rhineland-Palatinate. Elbling presented a preliminary review of the pilot project, which was conducted by the Trier and Mainz police prefectures. "We found that our new approach reduced the number of offences related to distracted driving by at least half," the minister explained, before stressing that "in many cases, the preventive effect goes even further."
The federal state's aim with this new mobile speed camera technology is to "reduce accidents caused by distracted driving." In 2022, 1,041 distraction-related accidents were recorded by the police in Rhineland-Palatinate. In the future, every police headquarters in Rhineland-Palatinate will be equipped with such a mobile speed camera system. The Minister of the Interior announced that in the next amendment of the Police and Public Order Act, "we will draw up a proposal, the legal basis of which will allow the permanent use of the Monocam. We will of course also take into account data protection issues."
The Monocam system, developed in the Netherlands, detects in real time when a car or truck driver is holding a mobile device while driving and automatically takes a picture. The cameras are often positioned at overpasses allowing visibility to the area low behind the dashboard where drivers tend to hide the hand holding the device. The images are instantly transmitted to a computer and analysed by trained police officers, as not all pictures are clear. Anyone caught using a mobile phone while driving is fined €100 and loses one point on their driving licence.