The Massachusetts State Police has unveiled a new GPS tracking system for nearly all of the department’s 3,000 vehicles.
The new system will allow police to track their own cruisers in real time and better deploy troopers during emergencies. Vehicles are tracked in realtime at the State Police Watch Center through a new secure automated vehicle location system which allows them to see where the vehicles and troopers are at all times.
Two years ago, an overtime and ticketing scandal rocked the department. Troopers and supervisors were arrested and the Mass Pike’s Troop E Barrack was shut down.
Colonel Christopher Mason hopes the new system will help restore the public’s confidence in the department.
“The public should have confidence that we are moving in that direction that is positive, that increases that accountability,” said Mason.
The system not only locates state police vehicles, it also stores the information, allowing for regular audits.
“We’ll now have the ability to track and store historical time and attendance so we’ll be able to utilize this on a daily, a weekly, a monthly, a quarterly basis to conduct audits to validate that troopers are where they are supposed to be, the attendance they are billing for, that they actually have an appearance at that site,” said Mason.
Ninety percent of the State Police Troopers Union voted in favor of the system when it approved its latest contract.
“The vast vast majority of us are out there doing the right thing every single day,” said union president Corey Mackey.
The GPS system is officially up and running and will be finetuned over the years.