The department's innovative policing model, Project Thiba, involves a task team of about 2 000 JMPD officers, in 538 patrol vehicles, setting up interlinked roadside checks across the length and breadth of the city.
These sweeps serve a multiple purpose - of crime prevention, traffic policing and by-law enforcement. Officers are empowered to apprehend law-breakers, as well as tackle moving violations and check on the roadworthiness of vehicles.
Motorists are stopped from committing moving violations such as jumping red traffic lights, crossing solid white lines on the roads, speeding and reckless driving, among other traffic infringements.
In addition, drivers and vehicles are checked at the roadside stops, and unroadworthy vehicles are removed from the road and the drivers are given notice to have the vehicles put through a roadworthy test.
Drivers found to be under the influence of liquor or drugs are arrested and taken to a district surgeon for a blood test. Officers may also use a Dragar machine, which measure the alcohol content via the breath. A blood test is not required in this case. JMPD officers also deal with pedestrians who may be impeding the clear flow of traffic on the city's roads.
Among the by-law enforcement operations carried out by the JMPD are those tackling:
- Illegal land occupation;
- Illegal street trading; and
- Illegal taxi ranks.
- Designated areas have been identified and demarcated for both vendors and taxi drivers.
CCTV Surveillance Project
A CCTV Surveillance Project operates in key areas where street crime is prevalent. Cameras are hidden in buildings overlooking strategic spots on the pavements of the CBD. About 200 CCTV cameras have been erected around the city and screens are monitored in a central control room in the Carlton Centre. When an incident occurs the appropriate officials - emergency services or crime prevention - are dispatched to the location.
On the sixth floor of the Carlton Centre, a huge room has been filled with banks of video monitors. In front of each bank, two people watch the screens. If they spot an incident, police on the street are sent a radio message, and they reach the trouble spot in an average of 60 seconds.
The CCTV system is run in partnerships with the South African Police Service, the JMPD and other law enforcement agencies.
In an initial pilot project, 15 crime surveillance cameras were set up in the area surrounding the Carlton Centre. Even in such a limited pilot project, the cameras had a significant impact and, according to Riaan Parker of Business Against Crime, the company that designed and operates the system, crime in the area fell by 40 percent.