Home News Safety at London’s sea gateway

Safety at London’s sea gateway

by Brian Sims

Marine terminal operator DP World is constructing the UK’s first major deep-sea container port this century as part of a development that will include what is reported to be the largest logistics park in Europe. The London Gateway terminal is on the north bank of the river Thames at Thurrock in Essex, to the east of London. CHQ Security Services is acting as security and risk assessment consultants to the project in order to assist DP World in meeting and exceeding the requirements of the International Ship and Port Facility Security Code (ISPS), the maritime sector’s response to 9/11. CHQ has advised on and implemented equipment across CCTV, perimeter intrusion detection systems (PIDS), access control and wide-area surveillance. A crucial aspect of security at London Gateway has been creation of an ISPS demarcation line within which client and third parties conduct crucial operational activity such as safety and welfare, and security reviews. (The ISPS code demands that operators must define a perimeter and have a declared method of monitoring it.) CHQ have designed a perimeter intrusion detection system (PIDS) as well as CCTV surveillance strategy for site-wide security and protection of the terminal building. The London Gateway site covers 600 hectares and works have included movement of 27 million cubic meters of sand to optimise tidal window access for deep-drafted vessels. This has further enhanced the site’s advantages over rival ports. Kevin Brownell, a director of CHQ who is himself a qualified Port Facility Security Officer, comments,” DP World wanted a robust, effective security strategy that would be unobtrusive and in sympathy with both the built and natural environment. Proceeding from an initial requirement of CCTV design, our remit grew and CHQ began consulting with departments including facilities, engineering and health & safety in addition to security.” CHQ was able to unify access control systems, complying with ISPS Code that access control requirements which say that there should be three tiers according to perceived threat levels. Mustering is also a prime health and safety concern at London Gateway. CHQ realised that in the event of an alarm, staff, contractors and visitors would be unlikely to use their badges as they left buildings. However, installation of badge readers located outdoors means that in the event of an emergency, marshals will know who has left the building and, crucially, who remains inside. Use of smartphone apps will give marshals real-time information. London Gateway will have six berths and is due to open for shipping in the fourth quarter of 2013. It is at the forefront of innovation in the maritime sector and will use automated container handling systems and controls as cargo is transferred to the adjacent logistics park. The proximity of the logistics centre on the same site will reduce the carbon footprint of all parties since ’empty’ miles for container transport will be minimised. Speed to market will also be dramatically improved.

You may also like