Ottawa Police celebrate their one-year anniversary using the Automatic License Plate Recognition system


The Ottawa Police Service began using the Automatic License Plate Recognition (ALPR) system in August of 2016.  The device assists police in ensuring road safety by identifying a variety of Highway Traffic Act (HTA) infractions, including stolen license plates and suspended or unlicensed drivers.


To date, Traffic Enforcement of the Ottawa Police Service has achieved the following results after approximately 12 months of operation:

  • 140 suspended / prohibited drivers
  • 255 unlicensed drivers
  • 1706 long term expired validations
  • 4 stolen vehicles/ plates
  • 2 persons on warrant
  • Numerous other HTA and Criminal Code offences

The success of the project has led to a second unit being added to the fleet for the Traffic Services Unit.  The next phase of the project will involve making available an ALPR vehicle to OPS  Frontline Patrol Services, in order to increase enforcement throughout the city.


Several months ago, I had the opportunity to work with the OPS and Safer Roads Ottawa monitoring Hazeldean Road, in front of Imagination Station Day Care, during the afternoon school bus drop off schedule.  Concerns had been brought forward to my office regarding traffic not adhering to the flashing lights of the school buses as children dismounted. The efficiency and accuracy of the ALPR was incredibly proficient and accurate. I will implement additional monitoring of this type once again as kids head back to school in the fall.


Funding for the purchase of the first and second ALPR units was provided by the Safer Roads Ottawa Program. The Safer Roads Ottawa Program is a leading community partnership between Ottawa Fire Services, Ottawa Paramedic Service, Ottawa Police Service, Ottawa Public Health and the Transportation Services Department committed to preventing or eliminating road deaths and serious injuries for all people in the City of Ottawa, through culture change, community engagement, and development of a sustainable safe transportation environment.