The folks in New Zealand and Australia have been working on in street sensors for ages and have a number of systems installed. They are popular here because a majority of the parking is time lilmited (one hour free, then you must move your car, etc). So necessity being the mother of invention, the Aussies and Kiwis have come up with systems that monitor cars when they are in on street spaces and report back to headquarters and to a PDA carried by an enforcement officer the status of the car in the space. The sensor looks like this:
I noticed the sensor when driving around looking for the hotel where the New Zealand Parking Association was holding its convention. When I walked into the exhibit hall, the first booth had a large flat screen display with a representation of the surrounding city and green and red squares denoting spaces that were in violation. I was looking at exactly what I was driving in a few minutes earlier.
The manufacturer, Metereye, was on site and Steve Hall explained everything in detail. Parking wardens get information sent to their hand held and can then know which cars are in violation. The hand held is also a ticket writer and the citation is printed and the evil parker is doomed.
I was also informed that particularly in Australia these systems are important because parking wardens have to be focused on their prey and kept out of the blazing sun as much as possible to prevent sun stroke and the resulting law suits against the local councils. I was told that this is a serious problem. No, sunscreen doesn’t help.
Works for me.