Oncam 360° video cameras help Petrol Ofisi petrol station in Istanbul keep the busy forecourt safe for customers and staff
Oncam IP video monitoring solution comprises 10 high-definition IP cameras and SeeTec Cayuga recording platform

An IP technology system featuring Oncam 360° video cameras helps a Petrol Ofisi petrol station in Istanbul keep the busy forecourt safe for customers and staff. The cameras also provide vital information to help develop new services for customers.

Safety first

Petrol station forecourts are full of potential hazards — from fuel spills to moving cars. If an incident or accident occurs, it’s vital the manager can review what happened and establish who was responsible. That’s where an effective video monitoring system comes in.

The Zumre Gas Station in Istanbul, operated as a franchise under the Petrol Ofisi brand, serves commuters and residents in the Bahcesehir area. Running a petrol station is a new line of business for its owner, Sunny Electrical Group, a well-known supplier of high-quality home appliances in Turkey.

Located just off a busy highway, the newly constructed Zumre Gas Station attracts more than 800 cars and trucks to its pumps every day; and around 600 people visit the forecourt shop to buy goods ranging from groceries — including organic products — to gifts.

To keep its customers and staff safe, Sunny Electrical Group decided to install a scalable video system, based on the latest IP technology, to cover the forecourt and shop. Because attendants operate the station’s six pumps, there’s little risk of anyone driving off without paying for their fuel. Even so, the company wanted a solution that could capture number plates. “With so many customers driving in and out of the station every day, we wanted to be able to identify cars in the event of an incident on the forecourt,” says Mustafa Varvar, Company Manager.

Complete coverage with no blind spots

In collaboration with integration partner Fescom Engineering, Oncam designed and developed a video monitoring solution for the petrol station comprising 10 high-definition IP cameras and a SeeTec Cayuga recording platform. Five of the cameras were Oncam 360° five-megapixel cameras: three covering the pumps (which would normally require between 10 and 15 conventional cameras); the other two covering the shop and the entrance to the office.

“In my experience, you’d normally need 25 or 30 narrow-field-of-view cameras to cover a petrol station of this size, but we’re using just five Oncam 360s, along with five narrow-field cameras, to get complete coverage with no blind spots,” says Varvar. “Even if we lost coverage from one of the Oncam 360s, the remaining cameras could still record the overlapping area.”

"The all-round visibility of the forecourt provided by the Oncam 360s mean we can focus these two cameras on providing number plate images," says Mustafa Varvar, Company Manager

Two of the narrow-field-of-view cameras are dedicated to capturing car number plates at the entrance and exit to the petrol station. “The all-round visibility of the forecourt provided by the Oncam 360s mean we can focus these two cameras on providing number plate images, which are clear enough to read with the naked eye,” says Varvar.

The petrol station subsequently added two more Oncam 360s to cover the organic food market.

Incident reviews that leave no room for doubt

Full coverage of the forecourt means that every incident is captured on video — whether it’s a suspected theft from an unattended car while the driver pays in the shop, a carhitting an obstacle, or a near miss for a pump attendant or pedestrian. Varvar can review video footage of any reported incident to see exactly what happened, determine who was responsible, and take appropriate action based on the evidence. And it’s not just Varvar who finds the video evidence useful, as he recounts: “When an incident happened on the other side of the highway, the police asked to see footage from our Oncam 360° cameras to help them identify who was involved and forensically analyse the scene.”

Data that drives business development

Varvar is also counting on the video footage to support his business development plans — especially once he upgrades to the latest 12-megapixel Oncam 360s.

By analysing customers’ behaviour — such as how many people buy petrol, how many visit the shop, and how many call in just to use the washrooms — Varvar will have valuable data to underpin decisions about, for example, expanding the shop or adding more parking. The company could even use the data to inform the design and development of other petrol stations in the future.

“We’re increasingly seeing forward thinking companies like Sunny Electrical Group go beyond security and safety objectives, as they use high-definition video evidence to help drive business growth and deliver new levels of customer service,” says Cem Yildizak, Country Manager for Oncam.

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