The cameras are powered by electricity, and Vumacam is testing various sustainable options that can be used to meet our requirements. We have applied to City Power for power connections, however, the policies and procedures concerning this do take a long time with no guaranteed outcome of receiving power from the grid directly.
Furthermore, the quoted charge for installation was up to R100,000 per pole which was prohibitively expensive, not to mention that the electrical maintenance turnaround time would impact the Vumacam SLA uptime commitment.
However should an agreement from City Power come to pass, then the cameras would switch across at that time. In the interim, Vumacam is rolling out infrastructure as wayleaves are approved. Wayleaves are submitted to the JRA and once approved by the JRA the infrastructure is deployed without delay as these wayleaves have an expiry date attached to them.
The infrastructure with poles and domes are then "camera-ready" and only go-live once a security company requests access to that area for monitoring and once power sources are confirmed.
Residents, Security Companies and Residents’ Associations eager to get the Smart Camera Network up and running in their area engage with us to look at how to create a community solution together. We work with our legal team to draw up an agreement for willing residents to become a power supplier.
An annual agreement is formalised between Vumacam and the relevant homeowner, with respect to providing power to specific security camera sites. Expected annual usage, based on measurements taken with a power meter, including an additional amount to account for any Eskom price increases, is detailed in the document and we pay the property owner via EFT for the expected usage upfront for the entire year, and every year thereafter on the anniversary of the pole going live should the homeowner wish to renew.
This is voluntary and is wholly up to a resident to decide whether or not they would like to aid in powering up a Vumacam pole. A resident can choose not to provide power, in which case we will approach the next closest resident to assist or install a temporary solar solution until a sustainable electricity source can be obtained. With the resident’s help, the Vumacam Smart Camera network in certain suburbs has been able to go live and help aid in the fight against crime.