Police have unveiled their new weapon – a camera that can produce clear images of people inside a car almost a mile away and dubbed ‘The Long Ranger’.
The massive camera has been showcased at the launch of a pilot project called Operation Indemnis.
Police in Gloucester are using the whopping camera to tackle motoring offences such as speeding, tailgating and using a mobile phone while driving.
Speed guns have been able to detect how fast cars travel but the new camera produces clear video footage and still photographs of the people inside them.
Martin Surl, Police and Crime Commissioner for Gloucestershire where the kit is being tested, said he hoped that it would catch people using their mobile phones.
When contacted by MailOnline, his office claimed the new camera could produce clear images at twice the distance of a normal one.
The project takes a new collaborative approach to the policing of the A417 and A419 – a major strategic route linking Gloucestershire and Wiltshire as well as the M4 and M5.
At peak times, it carries an estimated 35,000 vehicles day and has become an accident hotspot.
Officers will use the long-distance camera and automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) to check on what vehicles are on the roads and how they are being driven.
They said the main aim was to educate people about how to drive more safely, to prevent accidents that can kill or seriously injure people.
Some drivers will be given advice about their driving while others, who have committed offences, will be prosecuted.
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