If you like mostly hot weather with lots of sunshine, mild winters, a thriving economy, lots of bars, restaurants, and wineries, and beautiful beaches where you can swim with wild dolphins, then you will like Perth, Australia.

In fact, Perth once again made it into the top 10 of the world’s most livable cities according to The Economist Intelligence Unit Global Livability index, which measures lifestyle challenges in 140 cities worldwide.

Infrastructure and crime are two of the survey’s criteria. Perth drew high marks for its state-of-the art mass transit system protected by an equally state-of- the-art safety and security system. And that’s where DDN comes in.

The public transit infrastructure – including rail, bus and ferry services – is run by the Public Transport Authority (PTA). It serves more than two million people in Perth as well as more than 240 towns across the state. Says Steve Furmedge, PTA’s director of security services, “Public confidence can be gained only through consistent service delivery combined with discernible safety and security provisions.”

Some years ago, PTA installed an extensive closed-circuit television surveillance system along with security lighting, emergency help buttons and a long-line public address system. Not only can PTA watch what’s going on in their trains, buses and ferries, they can speak directly to the passengers. More often than not, the operator’s voice over the loudspeaker stops any unwanted behavior right away.

Initially PTA had 800 cameras covering 70 rail stations and more than 30 related facilities. This infrastructure was busy recording and sending data back to more than 75 storage arrays, each with its own server.

The inevitable happened. The system reached capacity and to make matters worse, with that many servers, failures became an unpleasant fact of life for the PTA IT organization.

Luckily the story has a happy ending. PTA virtualized the server fleet, effectively centralizing the architecture, and deployed two high-availability Fibre Channel/SATA storage systems from DDN. This boosted capacity to more than 1.5PBs and improved performance with an average of 6 GB/s of throughput.

That was then. Recently PTA experienced a major boost in data growth due to the CCTV system upgrade including expansion from a hybrid analog and digital lash up to a fully digital solution. Once again, DDN was called upon to support PTA’s ambitious plans.

We installed a pair of even higher performance storage systems with 3PBs of total capacity and the ability to scale beyond 20PBs of video surveillance capacity. Today PTA is using the expanded DDN storage infrastructure to process data from 1800 cameras across 72 stations, 234 railcars, 32 facilities and several ferry services. The system will also accommodate several hundred planned cameras that will be used to cover a new rail line to the airport, an underground bus station in the city center, and several new train stations.

Furmedge states, “If an incident does take place, we have a clear, easily accessible recording of what transpired. That makes it easier to apprehend and prosecute offenders. In fact, our ability to provide video evidence of criminal behavior has contributed greatly to the PTA 97% rate of successful prosecution.”

So when you visit Perth, plan to travel on PTA’s state-of-the-art transit system to one of the nearest beautiful beaches. You’ll be safe and secure all the way. Surf’s up!

  • Laura Shepard
  • Laura Shepard
  • Senior Director of Marketing
  • Date: June 29, 2015