Tasmania Police will introduce body-worn cameras in the North and North-West following the roll-out of the first cameras in Hobart, Police Commissioner Darren Hine says.
The announcement comes after the state government last year committed $3.4 million in funding for the provision of body-worn cameras for police officers.
The first of the cameras – attached to the front of an officer’s vest and “highly” visible to Tasmanians interacting with police - became operational in Hobart on Monday.
Tasmania Police said its officers will record their attendance at all incidents, adhering to already established guidelines for the use of body-worn cameras.
Over the coming months, the roll-out of the cameras, provided by Axon Public Safety Australia, will extend to areas including Launceston, Devonport and Burnie.
It is said that body-worn cameras will make the job safer for police, enable audio-visual evidence to be gathered more efficiently and improve accountability.
“Deploying the first body-worn cameras to frontline officers is a significant step forward for Tasmania Police in terms of providing a safe working environment for our officers and delivering operational efficiencies,” Commissioner Hine said.
Police Minister Michael Ferguson said the government would be introducing legislation to enable police’s long-term use of body-worn cameras.
“It is anticipated that the use of the cameras will positively influence the behaviour of people interacting with police,” Mr Ferguson said.