The Port Alfred Business Forum, including Sunshine Coast Tourism, met at My Pond Hotel in Van der Riet Street on Thursday evening with two focus areas to discuss.
Firstly, the security cameras that have been installed all around the area are proving to be very effective in identifying suspicious vehicles and catching criminals as they attempt to escape.
Clinton Millard of Atlas/Multi Security gave an explanation of how the cameras worked in not just identification of licence plates (the LPR or licence plate recognition software) but any identifying marks on a vehicle including stickers, logos and even scratches and dents. The ability of the software to do this identification will get even better over time.
Yet, as Danny Wepener, chairman of the Bathurst Agricultural Society and Eastern Border Farmers Association, a region of the Albany Farmers Agricultural League pointed out, almost all of the criminals apprehended by police and security companies were robberies at businesses, not on farms. Yet the farmers, so far, have spent their own money to install and maintain the currently-installed cameras.
Each camera costs up to R3,000 per month, which includes normal maintenance, operator costs, line costs, data costs and so forth. Although the farmers are committed to the project they are now asking for assistance from business to enable them to finalise the implementation of the system.
Warren Lange, assigned to the Port Alfred beautification project, also gave a talk about residents committing to maintaining specific areas of the town through planting trees and keeping grass and hedges trimmed to attract more visitors.
Lange pointed out that visitors and other holidaymakers were the town’s lifeblood and needed to see the town in its best light.
Full story in this Thursday’s Talk of the Town.