Camera surveillance

Camera surveillance helps in fighting crime, nuisance and violence on the streets. By using video pictures the police can react more rapidly when incidents occur, better enforce rules and more effectively deploy police officers on the beat.

Approximately 130 video cameras have been installed in various places in The Hague. The police view the video images 24 hours a day, 7 days a week from the Integrated Monitoring Centre (GMC). The pictures are ‘live’ so that the police can respond immediately when they spot an incident. Often the incidents involve serious violence in the form of fights, drug trafficking and anti-social behaviour. 

Closed-circuit TV cameras are always the last resort in the wake of a whole raft of measures. It is only when all other anti-crime and anti-violence measures have proven ineffective that CCTV cameras can be installed. Camera surveillance is worthwhile only if it is targeted and used selectively in combination with regular police surveillance.

The police can install temporary flexible cameras, in consultation with the municipality, if there is ongoing nuisance in a certain area.

Privacy

A number of rules safeguard the privacy of the people captured on video:

  • The videotapes are secure and only a small group of police officials is allowed to view the images
  • The images may be kept for a maximum of 28 days. Images where serious incidents can be seen will be transferred to an investigation unit
  • The police are allowed to use the pictures for only a limited number of purposes, including maintaining public order
  • Any person appearing in the video pictures is allowed to see them.

Where are the cameras?

The location and duration of the camera surveillance depend on the nature and the extent of the nuisance. The cameras are positioned at different spots in the city, most of them in the city centre. Signs indicate if an area is under camera surveillance. The cameras are clearly visible. Important locations include:

  • Red-light districts: Geleenstraat, Hunsestraat and Doubletstraat
  • the area around the Hollands Spoor (HS) train station: the Stationsplein, Bazarplein,  Kraijenhofstraat, Jan Blankenstraat and Hoefkade
  • the area from the Hollands Spoor train station, via the Stationsweg and Wagenstraat, to the Grote Marktstraat
  • the area from The Hague's Central Station, via the Herengracht, Korte Poten, Plein, Lange Poten, Spuistraat and the Vlamingstraat, to the Laan
  • Grote Marktstraat
  • Various temporary locations

Published: 24 January 2014Modified: 8 December 2017