Security camera mounts - Expert commentary

Making School Safety A Priority With Smart Technology
Making School Safety A Priority With Smart Technology

With pupils in the UK set to go back to school on 8 March, there are a number of safety measures schools need to implement to ensure the health and wellness of the staff, students, and school communities.  The first lockdown and closure of schools brought on by the coronavirus pandemic fired a “warning shot” for education facilities managers, forcing head-teachers to re-examine school safety standards. Now that a third lockdown is here and schools have been shut down for a second time, anyone behind the curve with the benefits of smart technology should get on board now before children return to the school environment. And with the ever-changing variants of the COVID-19 virus, schools can’t afford to be “late to class” when it comes to health and safety. Preventing the spread of disease Some schools in the US have been using smart technologies for a while to measure utility consumption and efficiency, streamline maintenance and enhance general school safety. These technologies are playing a significant role in keeping school buildings healthy and preventing the spread of disease. Let’s take a look at how smart technology can help schools to become safer, as well as more energy-efficient and cost-effective.   Thermal detection cameras  Smart cameras placed at entry points of a school can remove the manual task of temperature testing Smart cameras placed at entry points of a school can remove the manual task of temperature testing. These cameras provide medically-accurate, real-time temperatures of individuals in real-time. If a high temperature is detected, the software sends an instant alert to the relevant party. It can also be set to deny access to those with high temperatures or to people not wearing masks.  Safer water  As the coronavirus continues to sweep through the world’s population, healthcare providers should also be on heightened alert for Legionnaires’ disease, another potential cause of pneumonia with similar symptoms. Legionella is a potentially deadly bacteria that can infect a school’s water supply and cause an outbreak of Legionnaire’s disease. It’s a school's duty of care to prevent Legionella infection by monitoring the risk of the bacteria proliferating.  Particularly as schools reopen and previously stagnant plumbing and cooling systems return to use, additional Legionella cases could rear their ugly head to emergency departments in the coming months. Traces of Legionella were recently found at a Worcestershire school. The school was forced to remain shut while treatment and testing took place. Automated flushing and temperature testing Instant alerts will notify relevant staff if water temperatures fall within “Legionella-friendly” parameters The Health and Safety Executive advises, “If your building was closed or has reduced occupancy during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, water system stagnation can occur due to lack of use, increasing the risks of Legionnaires’ disease… If the water system is still used regularly, maintain the appropriate measures to prevent legionella growth.” Typically, managing the risk of Legionella includes running all outlets for two minutes, taking and recording the temperature of the water to ensure that it’s not conducive to Legionella growth. This is a time-consuming process, which is why schools are looking for automated water temperature monitoring systems. This smart system with automated flushing and temperature testing reports and records water temperature data in real-time. Instant alerts will notify relevant staff if water temperatures fall within “Legionella-friendly” parameters.  Cleaner air  Advisers say that improving air filtration and ventilation in schools can help mitigate the potential airborne transmission of COVID-19. Strategies include: Increasing outdoor air ventilation Filtering indoor air Using portable air cleaners with HEPA filters  Smart building technologies such as advanced HVAC controls can help facilities managers promote cleaner air with less hassle. For example, smart HVAC systems use sensors to remotely monitor and control variables such as:  Humidity Temperature Indoor air quality The level of carbon dioxide and other pollutants The technology is also energy-efficient and cost-effective.  While these solutions may be key to the reopening of schools in the era of COVID-19, they also bring long-term benefits. Although COVID-19 may have accelerated the adoption of smart technology, many of these solutions are focused on health, wellness, and security in general; which have been needed in school systems for a long time.

Ergonomic Standards Increase Control Room Productivity
Ergonomic Standards Increase Control Room Productivity

  Ergonomics are a critical, but often misunderstood aspect of designing control rooms for security. Ergonomics have a deep impact on the integrity of an operation, and the issue goes beyond the control room furniture. Matko Papic, Chief Technology Officer of Evans Consoles, divides ergonomics into three areas: physical (reach zones, touch points, monitors); cognitive (the individual’s ability to process information without overlooking a critical element) and organizational (how the facility operates in various situations; e.g., is it adequately designed for an emergency event?). He says the Evans approach is to determine the precise placement required for each element an operator needs, and then to design and build console furniture to position it there. Basically, the idea is to tailor the control room to the operation. What tasks must an operator perform? Are they manageable or should they be divided up among several operators? Control room design should accommodate the need to collaborate, and be flexible enough to adapt to various situations. It all begins with understanding the information that needs to be processed, says Papic. Increased Productivity In The Workplace Because personnel are often stationed at a specific console, desk or workstation for long hours, physical problems and productivity issues can result, says Jim Coleman, National Sales Manager, AFC Industries. Ergonomically designed furniture and related products have been proven to increase productivity and alleviate physical stress in the workplace. Ergonomic furniture solutions are crafted for the ultimate in safety, adaptability, comfort and functionality. Coleman says AFC Industries can tailor furniture to specific needs and environment. For example, a height-adjustable workstation can be combined with adjustable monitor arm mounts to create a relaxed, comfortable environment. Furniture offers modern designs, comfortable ergonomics, and comprehensive features. Rugged materials withstand the 24/7 use of command control centers. Health Benefits Of Ergonomic Workstations A sedentary office environment is often an unhealthy one. “For people who sit most of the day, their risk of heart attack is about the same as smoking,” says Martha Grogan, Cardiologist at the Mayo Clinic. Ongoing research and studies have shown that a change in posture (i.e., using ergonomic sit-to-stand workstations) is an effective means to combat these negative health issues. Using sit-to-stand workstations helps to eliminate musculoskeletal disorders caused by long-term sitting. They can also improve productivity and focus from the increased blood flow. Energy levels can rise and employees burn more calories. Control room design should accommodate the need to collaborate and be flexible enough to adapt to various situations “The ergonomic environment we create for control rooms involves considering every need of the staff at each workstation and their equipment, as well as workflow within the entire room,” says Coleman. “From the proper setting of screen focal lengths to sound absorption and glare reduction, each requirement and phase of a control room design is a necessary process to ensure the protection and safety of people and property.” Emergency Operations Center “The military has figured out that you are more alert when you are standing,” says Randy Smith, President of Winsted, and the realization is guiding emergency operations center (EOC) design toward sit-stand. “As soon as there is an emergency, everybody stands up,” Smith adds. Designing EOC environments also requires systems be integrated with annunciating signal lights to facilitate communication among operators. Winsted’s sit-stand consoles can be combined with a motorized M-View monitor wall mount, enabling a 60-inch wall monitor to be raised and lowered to match the positioning of the sit-stand console. Larger, wall-mounted screens are easier to use for operators, since a larger monitor size can make it easier to read text on a screen, for example. Combining the larger monitor with sit-stand capabilities provides the best of both options. Many operators today stand for 50 percent of their day, says Smith. Ergonomic standards guide the design of Winsted’s control room consoles, including ISO 11064 standards for the design of control centers. The furniture also is designed to accommodate industrial wire management (larger wire bundles), unlike furniture that might be bought in an office supply store. Read part 3 of our Control Rooms series here {##Poll37 - How well do you incorporate ergonomics into your control rooms?##}

Improving Security System Installations With Acceptance Testing
Improving Security System Installations With Acceptance Testing

Endless possibilities for security deployment have been made possible with technological advancements Significant technological advancements have created endless possibilities in how security is not only deployed, but also leveraged by the end user – the customer. For example, customers can now view surveillance at eight different offices in eight different states from a single, central location. A security director can manage an enterprise-wide access control system, including revoking or granting access control privileges, for 10,000 global employees from the company’s headquarters in Chicago. However, with that increased level of system sophistication comes an added level of complexity. After successfully completing the installation of a security system, integrators are now expected to formally and contractually prove that the system works as outlined in the project specification document. Tom Feilen, Director of National Accounts for Koorsen Security Technology explains that this formal checks and balance process is gaining momentum in the security industry. The step-by-step process of Acceptance Testing is more commonly being written into bid specifications, especially for projects that require the expertise of an engineer and/or architect. Simply put, it is a way for the end user to make sure the system they paid for works properly and is delivered by the integrator as outlined in the project’s request for proposal. While Acceptance Testing can be a time consuming process, it is a valuable industry tool. It is estimated that at least 95 percent of integrated security systems today have been brought through the Acceptance Testing process. Security systems have become more complicated in recent years. The introduction of IP-based, enterprise-wide and integrated solutions have all opened the door to more sophisticated access control and surveillance systems than ever thought possible. This process can vary depending upon the size of the project, but for a larger scale project, it is not uncommon for Acceptance Testing to take several weeks from start to finish. This timeline can be especially lengthy when the project involves hundreds of devices, such as access control readers, surveillance cameras, video recorders, intrusion sensors, and intercom systems. Most integrated security systems today have been brought through the Acceptance Testing process What is involved in the Acceptance Testing process? While the specific process can vary from integrator to integrator, many follow a similar process with their customer to ensure the system works accurately and that the customer has the proper certification documentation. The initial part of the process typically involves generating a report of each device installed as part of the system. This list enables the systems integrator to systematically test each device ensuring that individual devices are not specific points of failure for the overall system. For example, in a building equipped with a system that automatically releases the egress doors upon the fire alarm activation, it is important to make sure each door’s electro-magnetic locking system is operating properly. The systems integrator would not only test that a door releases when the fire alarm sounds, but also to make sure the access control system is notified if the door is propped open or held open longer than in normal usage parameters. For a door that is also monitored by a surveillance camera, part of the testing would also involve making sure that an image being transmitted to a video monitor is coming from the correct surveillance camera and that the actual angle of the image is what the customer has requested and is correctly labeled as such. If a device does not function as it should, it is then added to a punch list that would require the systems integrator to repair that device within a certain period of time. Once repairs are made, the system integrator would then submit a letter to the client stating that every device has been tested and works properly. It is also important for the integrator that once the testing process is complete to obtain a customer sign off (Certificate of Acceptance) on all systems tested and documentation provided. This limits liability once the system is turned over. From a safety perspective, Acceptance Testing is also used to verify that T-bars and safety chains are installed on cameras that are mounted in drop ceilings. It can confirm that panels are mounted in a room that is properly heated and cooled to avoid major temperature swings. Also, as part of the Acceptance Testing checklist, it can insure that power supplies that drive all the security systems are properly rated with the recommended batteries for back-up. And, that emergency exist devices or card readers are not mounted more than 48-inches above ground. An Acceptance Testing process serves to protect the end user's investment After the project is complete, Acceptance Testing protects both parties involved against liability issues. One example is if the building has a fire and the functionality of the life safety system comes into question. Acceptance Testing can be used to prove that the system was able to function as specified and dispel any concerns about its performance. At that time, all close out sheets are turned in, along with as-built drawings and a manual providing a complete listing of each device and system installed. Today, these manuals not only come in paper form as part of a large binder, but also digital files saved to a disc. The benefit of providing the customer with a binder or documentation of the system is that should the end user/customer replace the person who manages security at the company, valuable information will not leave with that former employee. While this checklist to close out a project may appear trivial at first, it is an important part of the security project process. By implementing an Acceptance Testing program, it serves to protect the end user’s investment, ensuring that the systems integrators hired for the project is knowledgeable and provides quality work. For the integrator, it helps towards the end goal of a satisfied customer.

Latest Tyco Security Products news

Tyco, Security Products Brand Of Johnson Controls, Announces Secondary Sponsorship Of The British Superbike Team, SYNETIQ BMW Motorrad
Tyco, Security Products Brand Of Johnson Controls, Announces Secondary Sponsorship Of The British Superbike Team, SYNETIQ BMW Motorrad

Tyco, the security products brand of Johnson Controls, the globally renowned company for smart and sustainable building solutions, has announced its secondary sponsorship of the SYNETIQ BMW Motorrad team for the 2021 British Superbikes season. Support for TAS Racing “We are delighted to have the opportunity to renew our support for TAS Racing who run the SYNETIQ BMW Motorrad team,” said Gordon Morrison, GB Sales Director for the Johnson Controls’ Tyco access control and video solutions. Gordon adds, “Our two companies share the same level of determination to succeed and we both have enthusiastic, talented engineering teams who strive for continual improvement in everything they do. From a strategic marketing point of view therefore, this synergy makes TAS Racing the ideal partner to help us promote the excellence of Tyco solutions.” Tyco brands, Exacq, Kantech and Illustra Johnson Controls intend to organize technology days at selected British Superbikes events Johnson Controls intend to organize technology days at selected British Superbikes events, taking place during the 2021 racing calendar. Before watching SYNETIQ BMW Motorrad’s Andrew Irwin and Danny Buchan compete against 24 riders representing 14 other Superbike teams, invited business partners and their customers will be able to see how Tyco brands, such as Exacq, Kantech and Illustra, are harnessing the latest advances in technology. Artificial Intelligence infused into Tyco products In addition to a wide range of solutions that will help businesses operate safely during the COVID-19 pandemic, such as the Illustra Insight Intelligent Frictionless Access, the guests will also be able to learn more about how Artificial Intelligence (AI) is being infused into the Tyco product portfolio, as well as how they can generate new business with the help of Cloudvue, the Johnson Controls Cloud-based subscription service. Philip Neill – SYNETIQ BMW Team Principal, said “After a long and successful relationship together, everyone at TAS Racing is extremely happy to welcome Tyco back to the British Superbike paddock in 2021. The team image may have changed slightly, however it will be very nice to see some old faces back at the racetracks this year.”

Johnson Controls Releases Tyco HD Video Encoder For Seamless Analog And IP Integration
Johnson Controls Releases Tyco HD Video Encoder For Seamless Analog And IP Integration

Johnson Controls introduces the Tyco HD Encoder, an ideal solution that allows high definition (HD) and standard definition (SD) analog cameras to function within an evolving IP infrastructure. The product is supported by both exacqVision, American Dynamics and VideoEdge. IP video surveillance Available in one-and four-channel options, the Tyco HD Encoder allows users in networked environments to retain HD and SD cameras while adding IP cameras over time, leveraging the benefits of IP while utilizing their existing analog infrastructure. Encoder hardware adapts analog video to be sent over IP networks, helping CCTV systems upgrade to a modern IP video surveillance organization. The HD Encoder is ready for deployment out-of-the-box and is Power over Ethernet enabled for minimal cabling by running power and data through the same CAT5/6 cable. The encoder also includes important features like HDMI out, H.264 compression for cameras up to 2MP, multi-streaming and support for AHD, CVI and TVI analog protocols. Fully integrated video system Tyco provides network video recorders and video management systems from American Dynamics and Exacq, offering the foundation for a fully integrated video system. Purchasing each aspect of the solution from the same vendor reduces potential product lifetime issues while streamlining setup and support.

Tyco CEM Systems protect Salalah, Duqm and Muscat International airports with 1 access control security infrastructure
Tyco CEM Systems protect Salalah, Duqm and Muscat International airports with 1 access control security infrastructure

Oman Airports manages and operates all civil airports in the Sultanate of Oman. As a result of the growing aviation sector in the Middle East, Salalah, Duqm and Muscat International airports were all recently redeveloped with new state-of-the-art terminal facilities and technologies. Access control solution To protect Oman Airport’s growing number of passengers and new hi-tech terminal buildings, Oman Airports required an advanced access control solution that not only incorporated the latest advances in technology but also had proven resilience within the aviation industry. With 30 years’ experience of securing airports around the world, the CEM Systems’ AC2000 Airport security management system was the ideal match. As the largest airport in Oman, Muscat International’s upgrade was a landmark $1.8 billion expansion project. Phase one involved the construction of a new state-of-the-art 580,000 sqm Terminal 1 building, which was officially inaugurated for operations in March 2018. CEM intelligent card readers additionally feature a large internal database for offline card validation" Airport edition access control system “Oman Airports required a proven, fully integrated security solution to secure Muscat Airport’s new hi-tech Terminal 1 building, as well as a number of its external peripheral buildings. At the same time we were also awarded the contract to secure the new Salalah and Duqm Airports in Oman. “This allowed all three airports to use the CEM Systems’ AC2000 Airport Edition access control system and share a commonality of security infrastructure for operational excellence. We congratulate Oman Airports in their achievement and are delighted to be part of such an important leading infrastructure project for the development of Oman.” said Philip Verner Regional Sales Director, Security Products, Johnson Controls. Intelligent IP card readers CEM Systems’ range of intelligent IP card readers with integrated controllers (S610e, S700 readers) were installed throughout Oman Airports to provide the highest possible level of on-board smart card technology. CEM intelligent card readers additionally feature a large internal database for offline card validation and can store up to 200,000 cardholder records and 50,000 transactions offline. This ensures zero system downtime, prevents any loss of transaction data and delivers the highest possible level of system reliability within airports. Over 3,000 CEM IP card readers were installed throughout Muscat Airport’s new Terminal 1 to protect airside and landside locations, including 45 arrival and departure gates, 29 jet-bridges and 82 immigration counters. Emerald touchscreen terminals CEM Systems’ emerald touchscreen terminals have also recently been chosen by Duqm airport A large number of outlying annex buildings (spread out over 30,000 m2) were also secured with CEM intelligent card readers. These included a new 97m high Air Traffic Control (ATC) tower, aircraft hangars, cargo and crew facility buildings and the new pivotal headquarters building for the Public Authority for Civil Aviation (PACA). CEM Systems’ emerald touchscreen terminals have also recently been chosen by Duqm airport for heightened security. Emerald is a combined access control card reader and controller featuring fully integrated Voice over IP (VoIP) intercom, onboard Power over Ethernet technology and a range of smart airport applications and operational modes, all in one single, powerful terminal. Integrated biometric and access control solution For areas of heightened security, over 1,300 CEM fingerprint card readers (S610f & emerald fingerprint terminals) have also been installed throughout all three Oman airports. As an all-in-one advanced IP card reader, controller and integrated biometric solution combined, CEM fingerprint readers uniquely provides three layers of security (card, PIN and biometric verification) via one hardware device and one integrated software enrolment process. This eradicates the need for a separate biometric enrolment solution, provides a quick and accurate biometric read time and ultimately creates less biometric verification errors at the door/gate. Intelligent IP readers critically provide Oman Airports with aviation specific door modes Gate room management CEM Systems’ intelligent IP readers also go beyond security by helping airport operations. Intelligent readers are used to enable air-bridge monitoring, provide check-in-desk enabling, control baggage belts and assist with airport passenger flow and gate room management. Intelligent IP readers critically provide Oman Airports with aviation specific door modes such as ‘Passenger mode’ which enables the efficient management of gate rooms for departing and arriving passengers. Passenger mode controls the open times of single or interlocking doors, ensuring Gate Room doors are opened or closed depending on the configuration set for a specific flight. The user-friendly LCD screen on CEM card readers effectively acts as a smart information point for ID staff and flight agents and allows staff to easily manage the Gate Arrivals process on the ground. S3040 portable hand-held readers Oman Airports now utilise portable card readers to enable random ID checks on personnelCEM Systems’ S3040 portable hand-held readers uniquely protected Muscat International Airport during its initial construction phase in December 2014. Portable readers enabled ID card validation at temporary airport site entrances and gates, which at the time of construction had no power or comms. Oman Airports now utilise portable card readers to enable random ID checks on personnel throughout all three airports. Designed specifically for airports, CEM Systems’ AC2000 Airport security management system provides powerful aviation-specific access control throughout airside and landside areas. Using a range of powerful AC2000 Airport software applications, Oman Airports benefit from sophisticated ID badging, airport visitor management and high levels of airport systems integration. Open architecture integration tools CEM Systems’ open architecture integration tools successfully enabled the AC2000 access control system to be seamlessly linked with other airport security systems including video, perimeter detection and Oman Airport’s central ‘Airport Operating System’ for the resolution of maintenance faults. This ensures that system maintenance faults and alarms are dealt with promptly, efficiently and with full accountability. Oman Airports use the CEM Systems’ AC2000 VIPPS application to manage airport pass applications and biometrics To provide the highest possible level of smart card security to over 30,000 authorised card holders, all three Oman Airports utilise highly secure CEM DESFire smart card technology with multiple layers of encryption. Oman Airports use the CEM Systems’ AC2000 VIPPS (Visual Imaging Pass Production) application to successfully manage airport pass applications and biometrics. AC2000 Visitors application The AC2000 Visitors application also provides a powerful tool for Oman Airports to monitor and control ID card access for visitors and temporary airport staff. Information such as ‘name of airport sponsor’ can be recorded and once visits have been completed, cards can then be recycled, creating efficiency savings within the airport ID centre. Moving forward, CEM Systems will continue to work together in partnership with Oman Airports and their chosen system integrators as all three airports move into their next development phases. It is understood that airport security needs and legislation requirements change over time and thus CEM Systems will remain flexible to help meet their evolving project needs.