Prevent Vandalism at Water Treatment Centers

Prevent Vandalism at Water Treatment Centers

The United States supplies its citizens with some of the safest drinking water in the world. Though many of us take this necessity for granted, many countries throughout the world do not have access to safe, uncontaminated drinking water. Much of the U.S. safe water supply is due to the implementation and operation of its water treatment centers.

Sources for drinking water are often subject to contamination by disease-causing microbes. These waterborne microbes, such as E. coli and Cryptosporidium, have the ability to cause debilitating sickness and disease. U.S. water treatment centers use a variety of different methods of water treatment processes to remove these types of dangerous pathogens in order to provide communities with safe drinking water.

Water treatment centers are starting to become a target for many would-be vandals who may be looking for a new swimming hole or to damage expensive equipment. Although vandalism is commonplace virtually everywhere, it exists as a very serious, potentially disastrous threat to a community’s water supply. Vandalized water treatment centers can easily lead to water contamination by means of damaged treatment hardware, rendering the purification process incomplete, thereby exposing the public to potential health threats.

Metal thieves, who often steal copper wire and other copper-containing equipment for profit, have been known to target remote utility centers searching for scrap materials. In addition to contaminating water supplies, the damage sustained by these thieves can end up costing millions of dollars in repairs.

Trying to prevent acts of vandalism at water treatment centers is difficult due to their often isolated placement. Water storage tanks are also maintained on rural hillsides in order to supply water pressure to the communities below. With little civilian oversight to deter vandals from trespassing and potentially damaging expensive equipment, there is little chance the suspect would be caught. Vandalism Cameras are necessary to protect the community’s source of drinking water.

Illegal Dumping and Deadly Mosquitoes

Illegal Dumping and Deadly Mosquitoes

All across the U.S., cities and towns everywhere are dealing with the threats posed by the crime of illegal dumping. In addition to such issues as urban blight and the negative environmental impact, public health and wellness can also be adversely affected by illegal dumping.

Illegal dumping brings many different health risks to both the environment as well as to the people of the community in which the act takes place. Of these health risks, some of the most dangerous are introduced in the form of vector-borne illnesses carried by a very common insect, the mosquito.

The mosquito is an insect that can be found in nearly every part of the world. Sporting a large familial community of about 3,500 different species, mosquitoes have adapted and evolved to thrive in any environment befitting their particular need, which include breeding. Illegal dump sites are the perfect breeding ground because a female mosquito can lay as many as 200 eggs at a time in an amount of water no larger than half a teaspoon. After these eggs hatch, the “pre-pubescent” mosquitoes then become larvae, often called “wigglers” due to their movement in the water. The third stage of a young mosquito’s life is called the “pupal” stage. The “pupal” stage is the final step before becoming an adult mosquito, and thus, becoming a threat to human health.

Nowadays, it is not at all uncommon to read about the latest cases of West Nile or Zika viruses afflicting the population of a nearby town; diseases which are solely transmitted by the common mosquito. Malaria, yellow fever, and dengue fever are diseases that are also spread exclusively by the mosquito, the transmission of which can have deadly consequences for those afflicted.

Because the entirety of a mosquito’s pre-adult life is spent in water, certain habitats easily benefit the excessive breeding of this deadly insect. Used automobile tires, an item often found in illegally dumped waste piles, provides this perfect mosquito nursery habitat. Other unlawfully dumped items, such as plastic trash bags placed outside proper trash receptacles, also have the ability to retain rain water and supply mosquitoes with a place in which to lay their eggs.

One of the few ways to combat these mosquito-borne diseases is to prevent the crime of illegal dumping using illegal dumping cameras.  How is your city combating illegal dumping?

Graffiti Prevention

Graffiti Prevention

It is no secret that most large cities are a hot-spot for graffiti.  In addition to gangs using graffiti to “mark” their territory, there is also a host of “artists” who belong to an underground “street art” scene.  What these gangs and so-called “artists” don’t seem to take into consideration, however, is the cost and resources needed to clean up their graffiti.

For instance, In 2014, Los Angeles city workers cleaned up 32.4 million square feet of graffiti, or the equivalent square footage of 562 football fields.  Due to the vast and large nature of the City of Los Angeles, this comes as no surprise.  At this rate, Los Angeles City spends roughly $7 million per year of city money to clean up graffiti– money which would be better spent on other programs that benefit the citizens.

Some cities pay graffiti abatement crews to clean up the mess daily. Although necessary, these crews are often working in vain, as the freshly cleaned-up graffiti seems to return as quickly as it’s scrubbed off or painted over, functioning as a sort of budget-money-black-hole, fueled by more than 100,000 civilian complaints of graffiti sightings.

One worthy idea devised by some cities, is to “punish” caught and convicted taggers by making them clean up their own mess and repaint the structures as a form of rehabilitation.  However, this is only working, if the graffiti vandals are caught and convicted.  What about the countless taggers that whiz by under the radar, committing graffiti on a daily basis, uncaught and therefore undisciplined?  This triggers the question, what are cities doing regarding graffiti prevention?  

It is clear, it is time for the cities to approach the problem of graffiti with a new set of eyes, due to the current situation behaving not unlike a recurring nightmare with no end in sight. The repetitive nature of current means of dealing with graffiti is like a game of cat and mouse, handled on a day-to-day and case-by-case basis.  Without a preventative plan of action and a graffiti camera, this game, sadly, is certain to continue.

Prevent Vandalism in Park Bathrooms

Prevent Vandalism in Park Bathrooms

Restrooms are frequently vandalized in parks, because restrooms are usually private and there exists little chance of a restroom vandal being caught in the act of committing the crime. Acts of vandalism most often occur in situations where there is less civilian oversight, and thus, less of a likelihood of being caught.

After a park’s public restroom is vandalized, the sight of such a circumstance can have a negative psychological effect on people using the facility. Emotions triggered can often include feeling unsafe and dirty.  The facility is now labeled in the mind as unsanitary, neglected and unkept.

Instances of graffiti, one of the most common forms of vandalism, often experiences further recurrences if not quickly and thoroughly abated.  The cost of repairs due to vandalized restrooms can exceed tens of thousands of dollars and cause closures of the facility, often resulting in frustrated patrons who visit the park. The cost of repairs due to a vandalized park restroom causes budget cuts elsewhere, and leaves very little, if any, funding for regular, routine park maintenance.

If a public park restroom falls victim to an act of vandalism, repairs and a lack of routine maintenance and cleaning can leave the restroom facility in a state of neglect. This type of negligence can result in a restroom facility becoming extremely unsanitary and can often harbor diseases such as hepatitis A, as well as various viruses including shigellosis and streptococcus. Illnesses from viruses, like shigellosis and hepatitis A, are very severe and are common in unclean public restrooms.

With public park restroom vandalism being such a widespread occurrence, a means for preventing instances of vandalism are paramount in avoiding the costs associated with the crime.  Vandalism Cameras strategically placed deter negative behavior and prevent the costs incurred which include equipment repair, park closure, and the health of those people who enjoy the park.