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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2005

    Unhappy Surveillance Video Recording And Police.

    Hi there

    I was just wondering, if I wanted to keep an area on my property (an commercial property) under video surveillance, is there any law or restrictions that I should follow?

    To be more specific, its the roof of this commercial property that I want to set up the video surveillance. This is because the property right beside it has two rooms leased out to random (and often changing) teenagers or students, the rooms are exactly at the same level as my property's roof. Because of this, the students would always go on top of the roof at night, chuck lots of rubbish (beer bottles, cans, plastics and cigarettes) and parties (yes ON the roof). Although the rubbish is not to an extent that it turns our roof to a rubbish dump but to an extent that blocks our roof gutters and causes water leaks in the building. With the building and the roof over 80+ yrs old, all this activity on the roof is not helping us to preserve it.

    How we know what they chuck, is because I am the one who is sent to clean up the roof every so often. How we know that they have parties up there, because the tenant who is renting our property told us. Once they even had the firefighters called in.

    Currently I'm thinking of setting up a video surveillance that capture the activies that goes on, on the roof. And any thing like parties, more dumping of rubbish, I'll send the tape or take the video to the police. This plan is assuming that the police can doing something about this. However something also tells me the police would just push this aside. Am I right?

    So mainly this long post is just asking 3 things:

    1) Is there any law in setting up a video surveillance on your own property?

    2) Surely what those teenagers/students are doing are against the law (parties on the roof, dumping rubbish which results to water leaks) is there anything I can do?

    3) Any idea on what I could do in this situation?

    Previously we have told the students or who ever is renting the place to keep off the roof and 'please' dont dump rubbish on it (even has a sign saying so on the roof). However every time I go back, there is always a blocked gutter and beer cans and what have you. Currently I have not talked to the landlord of the building that is renting out those two rooms, as this is due to I have just started doing this 'business' or 'project' in sorting this entire property thing out. However I can understand that the landlord of those two rooms would have little control in what they do. I mean the landlord is only renting out those rooms and aint there constantly monitoring those students. Plus if he get rid of those student it means he/she loses rent/income.

    So yeah...

    Last edited by CCF; 04-11-2006 at 09:29 PM. Reason: correcting spelling

  2. #2
    Senior Member roddy_boy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005

    Default Re: Surveillance Video Recording And Police.

    Where abouts is this? :-/

  3. #3

    Default Re: Surveillance Video Recording And Police.

    I'm not a lawyer but I would:

    1. Talk with your tenant and get their cooperation on the issue.
    2. Set up notices along with the cameras informing people that they are operating. Ensure that the cameras can only see the signposted area.
    3. Before actively seeking police intervention obtain evidence of where people are coming from and issue a trespass notice to the appropriate people.
    4. If it happens again after issuing the notice, take it to the police.

    You have obligations to inform people that you are collecting personal information, which could be interpreted as covering video surveillance on private property. You may also have further obligations to your tenants. It's best to stay on the safe side.

    If all goes well then the people will see the "camera operating" signs and leave your roof alone. If things go wrong then you have the evidence you need to take this to the police and will still be reasonably safe from complaints.

    For privacy information visit
    (Disclosure: My mother works there. This post is all just off the top of my head though and may be wrong. Caveat lector.)
    Why use a simple solution when a complicated one will suffice?

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2005

    Default Re: Surveillance Video Recording And Police.

    Well, from what I remember from my law lectures, and as far as I know...

    No.. You can do whatsoever you like "within your property". So, you can setup a camera on your roof certainly. That is non contentious.....

    However, what might be abit more problematic, is if your roof is a "quasi-public" area... Places such as commercial buildings' lobbies, carpark, etc. That's more dealing with a breach of other people's privacy, rather than "what you can do within your own property" though....

    But all in all.. I think a camera on your own roof, recording just your part of the roof, is no problem at all.... Signs? You don't need them, cause you aren't exactly going to post the videos on YouTube, are you? (Not much privacy issues then).... But they may well play a deterrent effect...

    Whether the police would actually do anything of course, is another matter. But I have a feeling that the police would most likely just refer you on to the disputes tribunal, if you weren't able to resolve this with the other owner/flatter...
    Last edited by jesseycy; 05-11-2006 at 03:00 PM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2005

    Default Re: Surveillance Video Recording And Police.

    Thanks alot for everyone's input.

    Will be talking to the next door landlord regarding to the issue.

    As for the location, its up in Auckland City. The roof is in a location where its pretty isolated as the roof is blocked off by surrounding walls. So regarding to setting up the surveillance, it'll be pretty simple to set it up that it would just monitor the roof and no where else.

    Any more suggestion would be great


  6. #6
    1337 Member motorbyclist's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    An armchair, from where I instantly become an expert on all things

    Default Re: Surveillance Video Recording And Police.

    as i understand things it's your roof and they are tresspassing. set up the camera and put up deterrent signs. catch them on video, issue tresspass notice, then when they do it again call the cops (ideally while they're having the party)

    i'm all up for drunken student parties, but not on some random guys roof where all the rubbish is left behind.... perhaps put up an electric fence along the edge if the fall isnt too high (stupid thing is that them falling off the roof/wall as a result of being shocked would be your fault even though they shouldnt be there and know it)
    When it comes to computers there is a difference to what you need and what you want, the former being less than half the price of the latter.

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