New York City Taxi & Limousine Commission
New York City was one of the first cities in North America to mandate cameras in its taxis and for-hire vehicles (FHVs). The NYC Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC) introduced its original safety camera specification in 2000 and cameras quickly became the preferred item of safety equipment for the FHVs. In 2007, the TLC updated their camera specifications to take advantage of the latest advances in camera technology, increasing the number of images by a factor of 10, and greatly increasing the resolution and the image quality of the night images. In 2008, with approximately 20,000 cameras installed, New York has more cameras than any other city. The number of incidents of taxi crime is also one of the lowest in the world.
In the late 1990's, a rash of murders of taxi drivers in New York led the Mayor to create a task force to study the most cost-effective approach to improving the safety of taxi drivers in New York. Partitions had been in use for many years in the Yellow cabs, but it was felt that alternative technologies might be more appropriate for the approximately 30,000 for-hire vehicles (FHVs). Any solution would need to be rugged, easy to install, "fit-and-forget"... and in production.
In 1998, VerifEye had introduced its first TaxiCam system. By 2000, the TaxiCam MK II was in full scale production with major cities such as Sydney, Australia and Toronto, Canada having already mandated cameras. The TLC needed to implement a camera program that could rapidly, and professionally, install cameras in up to 30,000 vehicles. VerifEye stepped up to the plate and quickly trained approximately 15 installation shops in the five boroughs of New York. Today, VerifEye has more than 20 authorized installation shops in New York City and we maintain sufficient inventory of the New York City TaxiCam to supply up to 500 units in any one month. VerifEye continues to support the New York market by providing regular refresher training to all 20 of its install shops, the TLC inspection staff at the Woodside Inspection Center, and the more than 200 members of the NYPD that are trained to download images. The NYPD appreciates that fact that the VerifEye viewing software automatically detects whether the TaxiCam is a MK II, MK III or the latest MK IV and configures itself accordingly.