Traffic cameras offer new perspective

Thursday, June 5th 2008, 4:30 pm
By: News 9

By Gan Matthews, NEWS 9

An eye in the sky that's helping first responders at traffic accidents can now be viewed on your home computer, except the view is a little different.

Oklahoma Department of Transportation cameras are mounted all over the metro. They're monitoring the traffic flow. Starting this week you can see what they see--sort of.

On the ODOT Web site you can now see the view from 17 cameras in the metro. It could help you plan your trip and avoid traffic congestion.

"People need as much information as they can so they can be able to reduce their amount of drive time," Alan Stevenson with ODOT said.

The still images are updated every two minutes. But they're still, stills.

Not like the real-time, moving, high-resolution images you see from the same cameras at the University of Oklahoma Intelligent Transportation Systems Laboratory.

"It's pretty cool; it's pretty exciting technology," OU graduate student Adrian Campbell said.

The ITS lab designed the software for the ODOT system.

"This video is currently available to a large collection of agencies including municipalities, dispatchers for the state police, EMS, fire departments," Lab co-director Joseph Havlicek said.

The general public cannot see it yet. The bandwidth is too narrow on a home computer.

"Our images are anywhere from three to four MB, so it's really not ever going to get to give you the full motion that you want. So, there's just a lot of constrains on getting that," Alan Stevenson with ODOT said.

For now the stills will have to do as you plan to travel.

The ODOT Web site also has views from twelve cameras in the Tulsa metro area.

To learn more, click here.