Our View: Bus camera justified if safer

Sometimes having a big brother isn’t a bad thing.

B.C. Transit’s plan to introduce Closed Circuit Cameras to a few of the buses used in Greater Victoria should be of little concern to the many of us generally guarded about our personal privacy.

In this case, the cameras are expected to help make riding the bus a safer and therefore more comfortable experience. That’s a good thing, given that the future of sustainable transportation in this city relies on convincing more people to use the bus system.

Concerns have been raised in the past about surveillance cameras being used inappropriately by those trusted to monitor and maintain the devices. Serious problems arise when such technology is used voyeuristically or tyrannically.

However, the equipment employed by BC Transit will only be accessed if needed to help identify someone who commits an offence while onboard the bus.

And while B.C. Transit applied to keep the recordings for 14 days, the provincial Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner only agreed to seven. TransLink in Metro Vancouver, which uses a similar system, also has a seven-day limit.

“People don’t want to know their information is held too long,” said Stephen Anderson, senior manager of B.C. Transit corporate safety and security.

Those stipulations should reassure most people that the cameras will be used only as intended.

There have been numerous reports of disturbing behaviour, sometimes spilling into violence, by unruly passengers.

If cameras on buses make potential perps think twice about committing an offensive act, the safer environment that results will be worth the cost of the equipment.

– Vic News

Just Posted

9 Victoria-area restaurants make top 100 most scenic dining list

Open Table compiled the list by reviews from diners between June 1, 2018 and May 31 of this year

Justin Trudeau’s carbon footprint revealed in ranking of world leaders

Travel company ranks 15 world leaders’ foreign flight CO2 emissions

Average rent for one-bedroom in Victoria nears $1,400: PadMapper

Victoria sixth in Canada for most expensive rent

Trudeau announces $79M investment for 118 more public transit buses across B.C.

Contributions from municipal to federal level to fund more buses in a bid to cut commutes

VIDEO: 1,400 classic cars roll into Victoria for Deuce Days

The four-day festival highlights classic hot rods, with a special emphasis on cars built in 1932

POLL: Do you carry reusable shopping bags?

While a court ruling determined the City of Victoria’s plastic bag ban… Continue reading

Greater Victoria wanted list for the week of July 16

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

BCHL: Alberni Valley Bulldogs have been sold

Victoria company has purchased BCHL team, but will keep it in Port Alberni

“Does Kirby care?” B.C. First Nation’s group using geo-targeted ads in Houston, Texas for justice

The Heiltsuk Tribal Council has called out Kirby Corporation for the Nathan E. Stewart oil spill

B.C. woman wins record $2.1 million on casino slot machine

‘That night was so surreal … I wasn’t able to sleep or eat for the first two days,’ she said

$900M settlement reached in class action on sexual misconduct in Canadian military

After facing criticism, the government moved to begin settlement proceedings in early 2018

Tax take stays ahead of increased B.C. government spending

Tax revenue $2.1 billion higher than budget in 2018-19

Most Read