Published on 27 May, 2008
WHSmith has employed an innovative CCTV system, SentryVision® SmartTrack™, at their distribution centre in Swindon.
Brian Cottrell, WHSmith's Crime and Facilities Manager said: "Our distribution centre in Swindon covers an area of over 250,000 sq. ft. During the year, we pick approximately 94 million items and dispatch 6 million packages. With a building of this size and with the amount of activity that goes on, there is no way that a conventional CCTV system would be cost-effective to install or efficient to operate."
The system, installed by Intrepid Security Solutions, is equipped with a concealed pan, tilt and zoom camera which glides along a track at speeds of up to 13 feet per second, enabling an operator to swiftly position the camera over any aisle to observe suspicious activity. Alternatively, SmartTrack can be preprogrammed for up to six automatic tours, each of which can have up to 60 preset stop positions. It acts as a powerful deterrent as the camera is hidden behind a mirrored enclosure and is virtually silent running.
The SmartTrack system was installed in the building to prevent theft taking place behind barriers such as racking and has, according to Brian Cottrell, saved WHSmith a considerable amount of capital expenditure: "We would have had to install a very large number of standard CCTV cameras to do the same job."
Although primarily installed to assist in the prevention and detection of theft, WHSmith has found SmartTrack offers additional benefits. For a company that is constantly looking at ways to improve efficiency, SmartTrack provides invaluable management information, assists in areas of health and safety, and operational and compliance issues.