Your next fender bender might get 3D scanned by the police
New 3D scanners are bringing a futuristic look and feel to Yuma Police Department crime scene documentation, the Yuma Sun reports.
The system, called FARO, uses lasers and mirrors to produce a panoramic 3D scan of an area. Once transferred to a computer, the scans are stitched together in a Google Street View-like rendering that can be viewed from all angles.
The YPD is the first department in the state to use the scanners, and it plans to deploy them at traffic accidents. The hope is that the scans can help streamline the data collection process and aid prosecutors, investigators and juries alike, according to the Yuma Sun.
Arizona experienced 107,348 traffic accidents in 2013, 777 of which were fatal, according to a report released by the Arizona Department of Transportation. FARO could help provide a more accurate picture of those incidents.
FARO’s products are geared toward land and building surveyors but police departments worldwide are investing in new methods of collecting crime scene evidence.
According to the BCC, law enforcement agencies across the UK, including the London Metropolitan Police, are also using FARO scanners for traffic investigations.
As we reported last week, Taser (TASR) stock prices spiked over the past month as police departments reevaluate the use of new technology such as body cameras and alternative weapons in their everyday operations.
The police shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri has highlighted the role technology could play in ensuring the safety of civilians and officers, as well as the need for sophisticated crime scene documentation.
Widespread adoption of cameras and 3D scanners could go a long way toward addressing some of these issues, but the technology remains out of reach for many agencies. While the cities of Mesa, Gilbert and Peoria are pushing for the adoption of wearable tech, Yuma was only able to purchase a FARO system via $63,000 granted by the Arizona Governor’s Office of Highway Safety, according to the Yuma Sun.
For more information on FARO, click here.