Since opening twelve months ago, the Crystal building featuring energy efficiency measures has shown over 83,000 visitors its intelligent building management, security and fire safety controls. Located in South East of London, the Crystal is a sustainable cities initiative by Siemens that explores the question of how to improve the cities of the future. With security and safety concerns an ever present challenge for public building operators, the Crystal showcases robust protection technologies that ensure the safety of the building, visitors and staff working within. Video surveillance, access control and intruder detection provide a seamless and unobtrusive approach to security challenges and all areas deploy the automated fire safety systems. CCTV cameras provide surveillance of the internal public ‘street’ area, public, staff, entrance doors and back office areas, whilst Siemens’s access control system, SiPort, monitors who goes where, and when. Smart card readers located at all access points ensure only authorised personnel have access to specific areas at particular times via a personalised smart card. Alarm detection throughout the building and surrounding perimeter alerts staff to any potential intrusion via fences, doors, walls and windows. Management of the security systems is fully integrated via graphical user interface and there are plans for out-of-hours remote surveillance from the Siemens control room at the London Borough of Bexley for emergency response. Tony O’Brien head of sales for Siemens Building Technologies Solutions and Security Portfolio explains,” Our automated large-scale video surveillance solution offers continuous monitoring and detects, tracks and classifies activity in real time, filtering critical events and identifying threatening situations that may require an operator’s attention. This greatly enhances operator efficiency as incidents can be detected and tracked with precision. The perimeter and sensitive areas are protected by ‘alert’ zones that generate instant alarms from activities such as vehicles or individuals moving into restricted areas. Intelligent video also makes it easier to search and review recorded clips as they are coded by date and time.” A Siemens Sinteso Fire Safety system delivers protection across the facility, fire detectors ensure there is no risk of false alarms and the subsequent disruption that this would cause. Each smoke, flame, heat and carbon monoxide detector is configured with a unique set of parameters for each location, this eliminates the potential for false alarms as the system can differentiate between false fire phenomena such as steam, and a real indicator of fire. For safe and timely evacuation in the event of an emergency, the Siemens E100 Voice Alarm system notifies all personnel in the area with sounders and clear voice instructions.
Brian Sims BA (Hons) Hon FSyI, Editor, Risk UK (Pro-Activ Publications) Beginning his career in professional journalism at The Builder Group in March 1992, Brian was appointed Editor of Security Management Today in November 2000 having spent eight years in engineering journalism across two titles: Building Services Journal and Light & Lighting. In 2005, Brian received the BSIA Chairman’s Award for Promoting The Security Industry and, a year later, the Skills for Security Special Award for an Outstanding Contribution to the Security Business Sector. In 2008, Brian was The Security Institute’s nomination for the Association of Security Consultants’ highly prestigious Imbert Prize and, in 2013, was a nominated finalist for the Institute's George van Schalkwyk Award. An Honorary Fellow of The Security Institute, Brian serves as a Judge for the BSIA’s Security Personnel of the Year Awards and the Securitas Good Customer Award. Between 2008 and 2014, Brian pioneered the use of digital media across the security sector, including webinars and Audio Shows. Brian’s actively involved in 50-plus security groups on LinkedIn and hosts the popular Risk UK Twitter site. Brian is a frequent speaker on the conference circuit. He has organised and chaired conference programmes for both IFSEC International and ASIS International and has been published in the national media. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk UK at Pro-Activ Publications in July 2014 and as Editor of The Paper (Pro-Activ Publications' dedicated business newspaper for security professionals) in September 2015. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk Xtra at Pro-Activ Publications in May 2018.