‘The Future of CCTV Intelligence and Fire Integration’ outlined by Cortech Developments and Bosch

Cortech Developments’ key focus as a business is to assist today’s practising professionals in mitigating risk by dint of employing smarter interoperability. The company’s recent Forum – for which Risk Xtra served as the Official Media Partner – brought together end users in order for them to share experiences, widen their scope of knowledge and learn the latest techniques and guidance, as well as witness live demonstrations of fire safety and security systems integration.

The event, jointly hosted with Bosch, was held at Cortech Developments’ head office near Knutsford in Cheshire on Wednesday 25 September and ran from 9.30 am through until 2.30 pm. It was designed to challenge attending delegates to consider how they might use their existing systems and new technology alike to deliver greater benefits and value for their host organisations, while also assessing exactly what the future holds for CCTV intelligence and fire integration.

A further objective on the day was for delegates to share experiences among their peers, widen their scope of knowledge and learn about Best Practice with a view to maximising their value from Datalog. Datalog is a modular software suite that operates as a single or multi-user GUI, providing local and remote site monitoring and control of building, fire, security and energy systems. From the end user’s perspective, Datalog assists in reducing risk and cost, while at the same time maximising efficiencies, situational awareness and accountability.

What happened on the day?

*10.00 am: Arrival, registration and networking with refreshments

*10.30 am: Welcomes and introductions where the attendees were introduced to one another and the key objectives of the forum were outlined

*10.50 am: Delegates had an open forum where they were able to share experiences and discuss hot topics and challenges

*11.50 am: Guest speaker presentation

*1.00 pm: Introduction to intelligent video analytics from Bosch

*1.20 pm: Live demonstrations of CCTV fire detectors

*1.30 pm: Innovation and integration explained by Cortech Developments

*2.30 pm: Event close

Fire detection and integration

One of the presenters on the day was Pete Bartlett who has over 35 years’ experience in the arena of building services and fire engineering and has been involved in the deployment of a number of complex projects in multiple sectors regarding fully integrated solutions. Bartlett specialises in the design and installation of commercial and industrial fire detection.

He’s technically minded and provides fire and security consultancy services including strategic review and advice relating to existing or proposed fire alarm and security systems, maintenance and service agreements, public sector and private sector new and renewal tender management advice and support as well as asset validation and guidance on compliance with servicing standards and recommendations.

Bartlett is currently working with the Fire Industry Association (FIA) in order to advise and help shape legislation and raise the professional standards of the fire industry. Indeed, his presentation on the day focused on the FIA’s journey to raise competency within the fire industry, the integration of fire systems and the benefits as well as the challenges around false alarms and the risks associated with them.

During his presentation slot, Bartlett asked delegates to think about what they wanted the integration of systems to do for them. For example, to prevent extensive fire damage, financial loss and loss of life, execute automatic actions between control equipment to initiate critical system operations, integrate data and produce clear, usable information and instruction to system users or produce data to allow improvements to system reliability.

Interestingly, Bartlett also expanded on a number of challenges that attendees may have already come across or may face in the future, for example an often prescriptive approach based on meeting the regulations, recommendations and directives, etc and not exceeding those same regulations, recommendations and directives, etc.

There’s also a challenge to provide a more proactive and responsible approach based on an understanding of what do you want to happen when an event or events happen that’s over and above the prescribed approach.

The focus is often around: ‘How do I produce an alarm or data relating to an alarm?’ and not on: ‘What am I now going to do with it or associate actions with it?’

Bartlett concluded his presentation with a run-through of the benefits of video flame and video smoke detection.

Feedback from delegates

Delegates gave the quality of the forum content an average rating of 4.44, scoring the workshops/activities with an average rating of 4.25. The added value aspect of the event scored an average of 4.44, with the maximum mark being 5. The two main reasons for delegates attending the forum were to learn more about the future developments for Datalog and to discover how to derive more from their Datalog system.

Memorable moments of the day for delegates included the following:

*Information on future CCTV fault notification

*Good to see the possible future enhancements due to come online

*Detail on advancements in technology and how they can be used going forward

*System demos and the guest speaker’s content

*Networking and knowledge transfer

*Discussions about how to pull a strategy for sustainable development together

*News on future developments

*Education on the Cortech Developments system platform/interface

*Learning about the potential of analytics in CCTV

*Meeting with like-minded people with the same challenges

*How cameras could be used as another sensor rather than just something to provide an image

One delegate from Northumbrian Water commented: “The event was great. It certainly delivered what I wanted from the day. It was good to network with other colleagues in the industry and the water sector, too.”

A representative from the Greater Manchester Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust added: “It was an interesting day that we spent at Cortech Developments’ headquarters. So much so, in fact, that we want to arrange to visit the company again to see how we can integrate its systems with our current ones used on various sites.”

About the Author
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.

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