March Networks Wins Maryland Transit Contract

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The Maryland Transit Administration has awarded a contract to March Networks for mobile surveillance network that will ultimately provide live, real-time video feeds via a wireless mesh network from the MTA's fleet of 669 vehicles that service the Baltimore area.

Wilenius pic.jpgThe deal, which Peter Wilenius (pictured), March Networks' vice president of global marketing, valued in the "mid-seven figures," is the first step in a new citywide surveillance system that will converge a number of video networks and manage them from a central command-and-control point. In addition to providing greater security for the 250,000 passengers who use MTA buses each day, the video system is part of larger long-term strategy in line with city anti-crime measures and homeland security objectives, Wilenius said. The company remains in the running for more of this business, he added.

"The buses are roving eyes collecting intelligence, and can be used to identify crime, fraud and theft and capture as much evidence with as much detail as possible," Wilenius said.

The strategy is in line with the Department of Homeland Security's emphasis on gathering intelligence and information that can be correlated with other data from inside and outside the area. As noted during a conference session during last week's Industrial Fire, Safety & Security Expo in Houston, DHS is urging police, fire, emergency responders and other public and private sector workers with jobs in the field to watch for activity and situations that appear out of the ordinary.

Under the agreement, the MTA already has deployed March Networks' Model 5412 mobile DVRs on approximately 130 city buses. The entire fleet is scheduled to be outfitted by March 2011, Wilenius said.

Video is recorded as the bus travels its route, and then is automatically downloaded via wireless link when the bus reaches one of four outfitted depots. While the city's wireless mesh is under construction, the DVRs will use commercial 3G cellular networks or WiFi links, Wilenius said. The DVRs also contain GPS devices, and transit officials can track each bus as it moves through the city.

MTA_Bus_01.jpgOnce the mesh network is complete, the transit officials will be able to view and download video in real time, and, if necessary, push footage out police or first responders in the field. Ultimately, video receivers will be placed in some police cars, which then would be able to view direct live feeds from up to 100 meters away, according to Wilenius.

The system relies on analog cameras today, but the MTA plans to upgrade to IP megapixel and high-definition cameras over the course of the next two years, Wilenius said. The plan is to have one camera monitoring the bus interior and the other looking out the front.

The municipal transportation vertical is a strong suit for March Networks. The company has deployed mobile surveillance systems in Miami, Las Vegas, Toronto and Orange County, Calif.
The Maryland Transit Administration has awarded a contract to March Networks for mobile surveillance network that will ultimately provide live, real-time video feeds via a wireless mesh network from the MTA's fleet of 669 vehicles that service the Baltimore area.

Wilenius pic.jpgThe deal, which Peter Wilenius (pictured), March Networks' vice president of global marketing, valued in the "mid-seven figures," is the first step in a new citywide surveillance system that will converge a number of video networks and manage them from a central command-and-control point. In addition to providing greater security for the 250,000 passengers who use MTA buses each day, the video system is part of larger long-term strategy in line with city anti-crime measures and homeland security objectives, Wilenius said. The company remains in the running for more of this business, he added.

"The buses are roving eyes collecting intelligence, and can be used to identify crime, fraud and theft and capture as much evidence with as much detail as possible," Wilenius said.

The strategy is in line with the Department of Homeland Security's emphasis on gathering intelligence and information that can be correlated with other data from inside and outside the area. As noted during a conference session during last week's Industrial Fire, Safety & Security Expo in Houston, DHS is urging police, fire, emergency responders and other public and private sector workers with jobs in the field to watch for activity and situations that appear out of the ordinary.

Under the agreement, the MTA already has deployed March Networks' Model 5412 mobile DVRs on approximately 130 city buses. The entire fleet is scheduled to be outfitted by March 2011, Wilenius said.

Video is recorded as the bus travels its route, and then is automatically downloaded via wireless link when the bus reaches one of four outfitted depots. While the city's wireless mesh is under construction, the DVRs will use commercial 3G cellular networks or WiFi links, Wilenius said. The DVRs also contain GPS devices, and transit officials can track each bus as it moves through the city.

MTA_Bus_01.jpgOnce the mesh network is complete, the transit officials will be able to view and download video in real time, and, if necessary, push footage out police or first responders in the field. Ultimately, video receivers will be placed in some police cars, which then would be able to view direct live feeds from up to 100 meters away, according to Wilenius.

The system relies on analog cameras today, but the MTA plans to upgrade to IP megapixel and high-definition cameras over the course of the next two years, Wilenius said. The plan is to have one camera monitoring the bus interior and the other looking out the front.

The municipal transportation vertical is a strong suit for March Networks. The company has deployed mobile surveillance systems in Miami, Las Vegas, Toronto and Orange County, Calif.

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