Las Vegas Police choose Helinet for New Year's Eve security

Feb. 1, 2005
LAS VEGAS Officials at the Las ­Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (LVMPD) deployed Helinet Aviation Services' Helinet/Cineflex HiDEF aerial camera to provide surveillance during the city's New Year's Eve celebration last Dec. 31.

By John McHale

LAS VEGAS Officials at the Las ­Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (LVMPD) deployed Helinet Aviation Services’ Helinet/Cineflex HiDEF aerial camera to provide surveillance during the city’s New Year’s Eve celebration last Dec. 31. The system was part of a comprehensive security program responsible for maintaining a safe and orderly New Year’s event.

Helinet enabled the LVMPD to survey crowds of more than 300,000 with high image detail, company officials say. Mounted on a LVMPD helicopter, the Helinet/Cineflex HiDEF camera system was the department’s primary aerial surveillance tool, delivering an encrypted video feed in real time to the LVMPD command center where it was monitored by LVMPD officers and officials from the Department of Homeland Security and other law enforcement agencies.

The Helinet/Cineflex HiDEF aerial camera system provided the Las Vegas Police Department with improved surveillance on New Year�s Eve.
Click here to enlarge image

“Helinet provided us with an aerial view never before seen by this agency on New Year’s Eve,” says Sheriff Bill Young of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department. “The imaging from the Helinet/Cineflex camera allowed our officers a view of the mass crowds, and details on the Las Vegas Strip from as far away as a mile and a half. From a law-­enforcement standpoint we couldn’t ask for a better tool on such an important night. This was our first year using this equipment and it made all the difference in the world.”

“Traditionally, law enforcement has been limited in their aerial surveillance operations by a lack of high-quality images, especially at night,” says J.T. Alpaugh, chief technology officer for Helinet.”

Helinet’s Helinet/Cineflex HiDEF is a light, gyro-stabilized high-definition aerial camera system. The image remains steady at maximum zoom with a 40× lens. Coupled with improved imaging, Helinet provides a 24/7 service with the goal of eliminating aircraft on ground (AOG) time.

Helinet also provides loaner systems ensuring the continuous operation of law-enforcement aircraft, company officials say.

In addition to the LVPMD, Helinet is working with other local, state, and federal law-enforcement agencies on the integration of the Helinet/Cineflex HiDEF into their airborne law-enforcement operations.

Helinet can provide a range of solutions to forces of different sizes-from a single camera system that a law enforcement agency mounts on its own helicopter to a complete package that includes helicopter, pilots, and camera operators.

The Helinet/Cineflex HiDEF is currently in use by Turner Network Television for its NBA coverage, providing high-definition aerial images for broadcast during nine games in the first half of the season. The system is also used by U.S. network television affiliates in Denver, Phoenix, and San Francisco for their electronic news-gathering ­operations. It will also be used during the Super Bowl.

Helinet Aviation Services is an international provider of aviation services. Helinet regularly flies heads of state, celebrities, and Fortune 500 executives, and transports patients in need of specialized care and life-saving organs to hospitals. Another part of Helinet’s business is its entertainment division, Helinet Cinema Solutions, a provider for aerial shots and stunts for Hollywood’s top films and commercials.

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