Body-worn video cameras for police are now being piloted as part of the fight against crime.
The experiment, the largest in the world of its kind, will see a total of 500 cameras distributed throughout the capital.
Police from two of Ealing’s five Emergency Response and Patrol Teams will be wearing the cameras during the next year.
Those taking part have been given guidance and training about when cameras should be used, which means they will routinely collect evidence at incidents such as those involving domestic abuse, public disorder and for stop and search.
The cameras will not be permanently switched on so interactions with the public will not routinely be filmed but people will be informed as soon as practical when they are being recorded.
Officers will ‘dock’ the camera at the end of each shift and upload the material to a cloud-based server and the images will be deleted after 31 days, unless needed for evidence.
The findings of the pilot will be evaluated by the Mayor’s Office for Policing And Crime (MOPAC) and the College of Policing before any decision about a future roll-out is made.
Chief Inspector of Operations Tim Cummins, from Ealing , said: “We welcome this exciting new technology and anticipate this will help increase public confidence and assist our fight against crime.
“Video captures events in a way that can’t be represented on paper in the same detail. I am hopeful that the mere presence of this type of video can often defuse potentially violent situations.
“Other boroughs taking part in this pilot have already reported the use of cameras has contributed to early guilty pleas where offenders know an incident has been recorded.”