NEA Has Used Thermal Camera to Catch a Man Smoking in HDB Corridor

You can’t run.

You can’t hide either.

Especially if you smoke along your HDB corridor. You might want to stop doing that from now on.

Since firstly, it’s illegal. And secondly, the National Environment Agency (NEA) has eyes everywhere.

Caught By Thermal Camera

Image: CNA

According to CNA, the NEA has asked a resident living in Bedok to assist in investigations after a thermal camera caught someone smoking outside his unit on several occasions.


The NEA letter dated 6 June, was sent to the lessee of a unit in Block 620, Bedok Reservoir Road.

The homeowner who received the letter should be scared because of its contents.

In the letter, NEA stated that they had a video which shows people smoking at the corridor, and entering and exiting the unit.

They even have a table of how many times this happened, with the total count being 12. The 12 offences took place between April 11 and 14 of this year.

Details Revealed

CNA, whom had seen the letter, stated that the letter said “Our investigations revealed that you are the lessee of the said premise.”

How did they conduct investigations before asking the lessee? The thermal camera.

That’s the power of technology, scarily enough.

“You are hereby required to take reasonable steps to provide relevant information of the offence such as the identity and address of the person who was smoking on or about the time of the alleged offence.”

Since they already have their unit number and video evidence of someone smoking outside the unit, they really can’t hide.

So, the lessee has no choice but to abide by the investigation.

2 Weeks

NEA said that they received 13 smoking-related complaints at the block since February.

This guy, or whoever it is, really is in trouble.

After receiving feedback from the residents of the block, they distributed educational pamphlets and worked together with the town council to further engage residents. On top of that, NEA also conducted multiple rounds of surveillance around the block.

After which, they installed a thermal camera there.

Investigations for this case has started, which included sending the letter to the lessee. They will be taking appropriate action once the investigation is over.

The lessee has 14 days to provide more information. If they fail to do so, they could be charged under Section 4B of the Smoking (Prohibition in Certain Places) Act.


Even if they weren’t the one who was caught smoking outside the unit.

Thermal Cameras

Image: tubezone

In September last year, NEA had plans to deploy thermal cameras in prohibited areas to catch people who smoke illegally. The camera would be able to operate both day and night, and capture high definition images of someone’s face from as far as 100m away.

Since January, there have been 70 thermal cameras that were deployed in residential areas or areas which have persistent complaints about smoking.

Talk about 0-100 real quick.

The thermal cameras help NEA to conduct investigations about illegal smoking and detect smoking at prohibited areas.


They are able to detect objects emitting high heat and can capture images of the smoking offence. Truly, the power of technology.

But I can’t help but wonder, would they be able to differentiate what is emitting the high heat? What if someone wants to eat cup noodles outside their unit?

Image: Giphy

I guess, if someone complains and mistakes it for smoking, then they would actually conduct an investigation.

They will continue to take action against smoking offenders. So all in all, don’t smoke illegally.

If you have to, smoke at places where smoking is legal.



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