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Sun, Nov. 17

Thermal camera system helps stop wrong-way driver in Phoenix

The Arizona Department of Transportation is crediting its thermal camera-based wrong-way vehicle detection system with stopping an accident from happening on a Phoenix freeway. (ADOT video screenshot)

The Arizona Department of Transportation is crediting its thermal camera-based wrong-way vehicle detection system with stopping an accident from happening on a Phoenix freeway. (ADOT video screenshot)

PHOENIX — The Arizona Department of Transportation is crediting its thermal camera-based wrong-way vehicle detection system with stopping an accident from happening on a Phoenix freeway.

They say the detection system alerted authorities and other motorists early Monday about a pickup truck being driven the wrong way on Interstate 17.

photo

Diane Begay (Arizona Department of Public Safety)

State Department of Public Safety troopers took the driver, identified as 59-year-old Diane Begay, was booked into jail on charges of aggravated DUI and endangerment. Begay made her initial court appearance before a jailhouse judge. into custody and nobody was injured.

ADOT officials say the thermal camera detected the truck getting on the freeway about 3 a.m. and DPS troopers were dispatched quickly.

The $4 million system involves 90 thermal cameras along 15 miles of I-17.

ADOT officials say the system has been operational for a year and has recorded detections of more than 45 wrong-way vehicles so far.

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