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Call box and emergency phone systems – maximise security applications
city at night
Acquiring emergency phones is an effective way to improve security and safety

How to maximise security capabilities of call boxes and emergency phones

From embedding a security camera to adding video surveillance capabilities to a call box to using emergency phone towers to provide enhanced perimeter security, some simple tips can significantly improve the utility of an emergency phone system for security applications. Here, Sam Shanes, Chairman at Talk-A-Phone, enumerates five such tactics to get greater value from an investment in a call box / emergency phone.

Emergency communications play an important role in today's busy and uncertain urban environments. Acquiring emergency phones is an effective way to improve security and safety. The following five rules outline how to utilise emergency phones as a security solution

Make emergency phones heard with broadcast speakers

Emergency communications play an important role in today’s busy and uncertain urban environments

Despite the general belief, emergency phones are not only used to connect to a security officer when an emergency situation arises. Many emergency phones can easily be upgraded with high-power broadcasting speakers, ensuring that security personnel can issue long-range mass notification broadcasts during an emergency. 

Make emergency phones "visible" with LED blue lights

Emergency phones can also include LED blue lights. Utilising both visual and audible signals can greatly enhance the chances of message delivery, especially to hearing impaired individuals. Additionally, the visual effect of the LED blue light alerts everyone in the area to a potential danger or emergency and that an emergency phone has been activated.

Create a perimeter using the phone towers and the LED blue lights

Emergency phone towers can also be used as a deterrent to crime as the size of the towers, in conjunction with the LED blue lights, create good visibility and towers placed in close proximity to each other can be used to form a perimeter. This indicates that security personnel are watching, patrolling, and ready to assist. As a result, those within this border are aware of the heightened level of surveillance.

phone tower blue light
Emergency phones can also include LED blue lights

Add a set of eyes with embedded CCTV cameras

A simple upgrade can turn an Emergency Phone into an all-seeing verification and assessment device. By adding an embedded CCTV camera into an emergency phone unit, one can quickly verify the location of the call and assess the urgency of the situation. A PTZ camera can be placed on top of the tower to give security personnel situational awareness of the scene over greater areas. Such CCTV cameras can also assist security personnel in tracking suspicious and malicious activity before an incident has occurred. Additionally, the CCTV cameras can be used for “virtual patrols” in which an individual can request protection via dispatch centre monitoring. This creates more time for officers to deal with other threats.

Adopt a layered approach to mass notification with integrated broadcasting and surveillance equipment

Emergency phones can provide a layered approach to mass notification, playing an important role in notifying everyone in and around a location. Integrating the existing equipment with broadcasting units or surveillance cameras can significantly improve the chances of reaching the intended audience, while keeping a close eye on the situation at hand. 

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