The management team at Iowa 80 Truckstop in Walcott, Iowa—the world’s largest truck stop, offering a full spectrum of retail amenities—has heard this line before, usually delivered through a savvy attorney. With more than 5,000 visitors per day, dealing with fraudulent claims is a business necessity. That’s why the company uses IP security cameras to monitor its premises.
“We’re a very busy place, and we have to protect ourselves from liability as well as theft,” says Burke Strand, network manager, Iowa 80 Group. “Inevitably, from time to time, somebody will fabricate a story to try to make an easy buck. When that happens, we need to be able to prove, without a doubt, what really happened. If the camera image resolution is bad, often it won’t hold up in court. That’s why we decided to go with color cameras and record full motion in Walcott, as well as our Joplin, Missouri and Kenly, North Carolina locations.”
Storing the video data from 320 cameras, some with resolution as high as 10 megapixels at up to four frames per second, eats up a lot of storage. “We retain the camera data for an extended time period,” says Strand. “We needed hundreds of terabytes of storage to support the IP camera initiative, but it had to be cost effective and easy to manage. Performance was also critical—when you’re laying video down in real time, throughput matters, or the system starts having overflow errors.”
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