IT might look like an ordinary car coming towards you, but motorists could be in for shock if they are driving an unregistered car in the future.
Victoria Police have unveiled the first of 221 Automatic Numberplate Recognition (ANPR) vehicles which will be rolled out across the state over the next two years.
The technology allows police to detect drivers who are suspended, disqualified or unlicensed, unregistered and stolen vehicles and stolen numberplates.
While Bendigo officers will begin patrols in the car next week, Ballarat officers won't be far behind with the cars to be gradually rolled out in coming months.
Road Policing Command Assistant Commissioner Stephen Leane said it would now be much easier to detect and remove people who shouldn't be on the roads.
“Unauthorised road users pose a significant threat to themselves and others," Assistant Commissioner Leane said.
“A study of fatal collisions in 2016 found that unauthorised drivers were at fault in 16 percent of them.
“The same study found that around one in five injury collisions involving an unregistered vehicle also involved an unauthorised driver."
Assistant Commissioner Leane said the system allows up to 500 numberplate detections, per shift and are also fitted with in-car video to record audio and visual evidence that can be used in court.
“These drivers have no right to be behind the wheel, either because of their previous unsafe behaviour or because they are unlicensed.
“We’re determined to detect them and get them off our roads and ANPR is a big step forward in that effort," he said.
“The system will allow us to scan around 5000 numberplates, which is a huge increase on what our officers are able to do manually.”
Ballarat Superintendent Jenny Wilson said she was looking forward to the new fleet coming into service.
"Ballarat will soon welcome the new technology which will greatly assist our highway patrol in local enforcement," she said.
"This is another weapon in our armour and considering our road toll in the area over the last couple of months which is really disturbing, we are imploring people to do the right thing on the roads.
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