The Horowhenua Camera Trust has been approved funding from the Foxton Beach Freehold Account to install modern cameras at five locations able to record vehicles entering or leaving Foxton Beach.
Foxton Beach Progressive Association chairman Ted Melton says that CCTV can't come soon enough. "Foxton Beach people love their beachy and relaxed lifestyle - but they want police to receive this kind of support to help them do their vital work."
He credits Foxton Community Board and Horowhenua District Council for strongly backing his association to get this project off the ground. He says CCTV has received solid support from Foxton Beach people and businesses.
The hope is that cameras will prevent problems before they occur, and will help police respond to them promptly when they do.
Foxton Beach residents have long suffered from hoons speeding around the beach roads, driving over the sand dunes and around the estuary which can have disastrous effects on the ecology and threatened bird species there, as well as the noise nuisance.
For this reason, the Foxton Beach Progressive Association have made the CCTV project a priority this year.
Mr Melton said there were many advantages to managing the project through the Horowhenua Camera Trust, including better and more cost-effective maintenance and replacement. The GST on the equipment would also be refundable, getting more value for money.
Monitoring of the CCTVs will be carried out by staff at the Levin Police Station who already monitor the cameras in Levin. The cameras are designed to detect vehicles and their number plates.
They will be installed at the intersection of Foxton Beach and Palmer Rod, Seabury Ave by the Little White Rabbit, Pinewood Rd by the Top 10 Holiday Park, the intersection of Wylie Rd and Himatangi Beach Rd, and three on the roof of the Foxton Surf Life Saving Clubhouse which will pick up any vehicles coming along the beach from Himatangi.
The CCTV system would work by recording video from all the cameras which can be viewed live and stored in a secure location at the Levin police station for 60 days.
If residents at the beach see a vehicle involved in what they think is a criminal activity, they should contact the police immediately whose monitoring staff can zoom into images and police officers alerted in Foxton to respond.
It is hoped police officers going to the scene of any incident at the beach will be able to see video directly on their mobile phones through an app. Mr Melton believed this sophisticated system "could be a first in New Zealand."
Mel Douglas is chairman of the Horowhenua Camera Trust which will operate and maintain Foxton Beach's CCTV system.
We welcome Foxton Beach joining in to our expanding Levin camera system. The trust and police are making changes which will improve police ability to detect and prevent wrong and damaging activities both in Levin and at Foxton Beach.
"We are also preparing to receive CCTV images from cameras in other Horowhenua communities as they come on stream in future."