Buses are using AI to issue parking tickets in US state

In a bid to change driver behavior, the city has conducted a 45-day pilot test of the AI tech, with over 500 citations issued each carrying a $300 fine.

by | Published on 19th Jul 2023

AI may be beneficial, but it also looks like it’s becoming a real pain in the neck.

Apparently, it’s now being used to power cameras on buses in one US state to issue parking citations.

READ MORE! Police are now using AI to hunt ‘suspicious’ drivers on the road

If you live in Santa Monica, California, you’ll be one of the first to undergo the trial.

The reason behind this is because the city of Santa Monica and its transit service the Big Blue Bus have been experiencing a problem.

While ridership is up, buses have been behind schedule because drivers of cars keep driving, stopping, or outright parking in bus-only transit lanes.

It’s been tough on city ticketing officials to keep up, so they came up with a plan.

The plan was to fit the city’s buses with AI-powered cameras to help issue parking tickets more easily.

So, city and Big Blue Bus officials approached an AI startup called Hayden AI for help.

The company, which makes AI-powered cameras specifically for parking enforcement, already supplies its tech to cities like D.C. and San Francisco.

We’re talking real NSA/Enemy of the State-level stuff tech.

The company has fitted the city’s buses with two special cameras installed on the windshield, capturing what’s happening ahead in the bus lane.

The information that’s collected is then sent to a computer box installed on the bus, which uses AI to process what’s happening in the photos.

Cars that are breaking the rules are flagged, and a report is generated that can be used to issue tickets in near real-time.

When the bus passes the vehicle, the cameras read and capture the license plate, with the information relayed back to parking officials so a ticket is generated.

Apparently, the cameras are accurate up to 10 centimeters and can tell if a vehicle is moving or stopped.

During a 45-day pilot testing of the system, more than 500 citations were issued, and each carries a fine of over $300.

Apparently, the goal of the system is not to issue tickets but to change behavior.

The city is yet to decide whether it will fully implement the tech but if you drive there, you may want to think twice about using that bus lane.



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Adam Gray is an experienced motoring journalist and content creator based in the United Kingdom. Using his media accreditation with motor manufacturers’ press offices, Adam test drives the latest cars and attends new vehicle press launches, producing written reviews and news pieces for supercarblondie.com. Before joining the Supercar Blondie team, Adam was Motoring Editor for Portfolio North magazine, North East Motoring Editor at Reach plc, and provided motoring content on a freelance basis to several lifestyle and business publications in the North of England. When he’s not behind the wheel of the latest car, Adam can be found at his local rink playing ice hockey or supporting his beloved Middlesbrough FC.

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