SINGAPORE: The National Environment Agency (NEA) will begin trialling the use of cameras with thermal detection capabilities to monitor rat hotspots from next week. 

The agency will start with four to eight cameras for each of two hotspots – depending on the size of the area – to detect rats via their body heat in outdoor and back-lane areas.

The cameras will be gradually rolled out to other locations during the four-month trial period, said NEA, without specifying the sites that will be monitored. 

The enhanced measures against rats come as Singapore recorded more rat burrows, with the agency noting an average of 4,163 in 2022 to 5,203 in 2023 in public areas per two-monthly survey cycle.

Thermal imaging cameras will be deployed for two weeks at the first two locations. The authorities will then analyse the results and reach out to stakeholders, such as premise operators, to put measures in place. 

“Enforcement action may be taken depending on the observations and follow-up inspections carried out by NEA,” the agency said in a statement on Monday (Apr 15). 

Thermal cameras may be deployed at the same locations for another two weeks to measure the success of the intervention measures. 

Data from the thermal imaging cameras will be used to help premise operators better coordinate cleaning, waste management and rat control measures. These can also be used in investigations against errant food establishments that fail to properly manage waste. 

The agency said thermal imaging cameras help with rat surveillance by discretely monitoring dark back-lane areas at night without disturbing the nocturnal creatures, as opposed to the challenge of having an NEA officer move around with a torchlight. 


Leave A Reply

© 2024 The News Singapore. All Rights Reserved.