The New York Police Service (NYPD) and the Metro transport facility (MTA) are exploring the potential use of robots from KnightScope to enhance safety and prevent crimes.
The office of the New York Mayor has announced the launch of the KnightScope K5 pilot security program following a two-week training period. Subsequently, autonomous robots will be deployed for patrol duties at Manhattan metro stations from midnight until 6:00 in the morning. New York Mayor, Eric Adams, stated, “When people feel unsafe in our trains and buses, it also affects our economic stability. We are utilizing existing technology, cameras that can engage with individuals and placing them on wheels, ensuring their availability 24/7 if necessary.”
In their press release, Knightscope emphasized the statistics provided by the NYPD, which revealed a 45% increase in store thefts. It is worth noting that their robotic platform is already being used by other police forces across the country, including Los Angeles. Knightscope stated, “Imagine a city robotic platform designed to identify repeat store thieves and notify stores upon their entry. A system that can discreetly monitor customer hand movements and instantly alert security to suspicious actions characteristic of thieves.”
Moving forward, Mayor Adams highlighted the potential economic benefits for the city if the initiative proves successful. He mentioned that the operation of the robot would cost less than the minimum wage. Furthermore, in the event of any damage to the K5 robot, KnightScope would bear the costs. Adams added, “We are not employing facial recognition technology. We do not permit the retention of video footage by the robots. This robot will undergo a two-month efficiency test, and based on our findings, we will determine how we will utilize it in the future.”