Is Big Brother watching?
Question Corner September 2012
by Tim Athan
Q. I-94 drivers have noticed the big pole-mounted cameras put up near every local intersection. Who's watching? And what can they see? I'm all for better advance warning of traffic problems--but it's a mite creepy, in the Big Brother sense.
A. The cameras are part of the Michigan Department of Transportation's "Intelligent Transportation System." They feed information on traffic conditions to large electronic message boards on several key highways, including US-23 and I-96. Noting that the system is very similar to one that has been in place for many years in Metro Detroit, MDOT states that "the system is for information display purposes only, and there is no recording of motorist information such as license plates."
[Originally published in September, 2012.]