Cue the exclamations that our Minority Report-esque future has arrived: This week, Japan announced the installation of automated security cameras that can detect drunk people.
Installed at the Kyobashi station in Osaka, the cameras serve a benevolent purpose–their presence is part of West Japan Railway’s efforts to prevent train accidents. According to the Wall Street Journal, in just the last two years, there have been 221 cases in which trains hit people on platforms, either because they got too close to the edge of the platform or because they fell off. Around 60 percent of people hit were drunk at the time.
The 46 cameras that have already been installed will search for signs of intoxication and alert attendants if necessary. West Japan Railway says the cameras are programmed to detect clues such as staggering, remaining on the platform for no apparent reason and sleeping on benches.
For the record, West Japan Railway said the cameras will not be used to identify people in any way.