CCTV camera mounts - Expert commentary

Ergonomic standards increase control room productivity
Ergonomic standards increase control room productivity

  Ergonomics are a critical, but often misunderstood aspect of designing control rooms for security. Ergonomics have a deep impact on the integrity of an operation, and the issue goes beyond the control room furniture. Matko Papic, Chief Technology Officer of Evans Consoles, divides ergonomics into three areas: physical (reach zones, touch points, monitors); cognitive (the individual’s ability to process information without overlooking a critical element) and organisational (how the facility operates in various situations; e.g., is it adequately designed for an emergency event?). He says the Evans approach is to determine the precise placement required for each element an operator needs, and then to design and build console furniture to position it there. Basically, the idea is to tailor the control room to the operation. What tasks must an operator perform? Are they manageable or should they be divided up among several operators? Control room design should accommodate the need to collaborate, and be flexible enough to adapt to various situations. It all begins with understanding the information that needs to be processed, says Papic. Increased productivity in the workplace Because personnel are often stationed at a specific console, desk or workstation for long hours, physical problems and productivity issues can result, says Jim Coleman, National Sales Manager, AFC Industries. Ergonomically designed furniture and related products have been proven to increase productivity and alleviate physical stress in the workplace. Ergonomic furniture solutions are crafted for the ultimate in safety, adaptability, comfort and functionality. Coleman says AFC Industries can tailor furniture to specific needs and environment. For example, a height-adjustable workstation can be combined with adjustable monitor arm mounts to create a relaxed, comfortable environment. Furniture offers modern designs, comfortable ergonomics, and comprehensive features. Rugged materials withstand the 24/7 use of command control centres. Health benefits of ergonomic workstations A sedentary office environment is often an unhealthy one. “For people who sit most of the day, their risk of heart attack is about the same as smoking,” says Martha Grogan, Cardiologist at the Mayo Clinic. Ongoing research and studies have shown that a change in posture (i.e., using ergonomic sit-to-stand workstations) is an effective means to combat these negative health issues. Using sit-to-stand workstations helps to eliminate musculoskeletal disorders caused by long-term sitting. They can also improve productivity and focus from the increased blood flow. Energy levels can rise and employees burn more calories. Control room design should accommodate the need to collaborate and be flexible enough to adapt to various situations “The ergonomic environment we create for control rooms involves considering every need of the staff at each workstation and their equipment, as well as workflow within the entire room,” says Coleman. “From the proper setting of screen focal lengths to sound absorption and glare reduction, each requirement and phase of a control room design is a necessary process to ensure the protection and safety of people and property.” Emergency operations centre “The military has figured out that you are more alert when you are standing,” says Randy Smith, President of Winsted, and the realisation is guiding emergency operations centre (EOC) design toward sit-stand. “As soon as there is an emergency, everybody stands up,” Smith adds. Designing EOC environments also requires systems be integrated with annunciating signal lights to facilitate communication among operators. Winsted’s sit-stand consoles can be combined with a motorised M-View monitor wall mount, enabling a 60-inch wall monitor to be raised and lowered to match the positioning of the sit-stand console. Larger, wall-mounted screens are easier to use for operators, since a larger monitor size can make it easier to read text on a screen, for example. Combining the larger monitor with sit-stand capabilities provides the best of both options. Many operators today stand for 50 percent of their day, says Smith. Ergonomic standards guide the design of Winsted’s control room consoles, including ISO 11064 standards for the design of control centres. The furniture also is designed to accommodate industrial wire management (larger wire bundles), unlike furniture that might be bought in an office supply store. Read part 3 of our Control Rooms series here {##Poll37 - How well do you incorporate ergonomics into your control rooms?##}

Improving security system installations with Acceptance Testing
Improving security system installations with Acceptance Testing

Significant technological advancements have created endless possibilities in how security is not only deployed, but also leveraged by the end user – the customer. For example, customers can now view surveillance at eight different offices in eight different states from a single, central location. A security director can manage an enterprise-wide access control system, including revoking or granting access control privileges, for 10,000 global employees from a company’s headquarters. However, with that increased level of system sophistication comes an added level of complexity. After successfully completing the installation of a security system, integrators are now expected to formally and contractually prove that the system works as outlined in the project specification document. Tom Feilen, Director of National Accounts for Koorsen Security Technology explains that this formal checks and balance process is gaining momentum in the security industry. The step-by-step process of Acceptance Testing is more commonly being written into bid specifications, especially for projects that require the expertise of an engineer and/or architect. Simply put, it is a way for the end user to make sure the system they paid for works properly and is delivered by the integrator as outlined in the project’s request for proposal. While Acceptance Testing can be a time consuming process, it is a valuable industry tool. It is estimated that at least 95 per cent of integrated security systems today have been brought through the Acceptance Testing process. Security systems have become more complicated in recent years. The introduction of IP-based, enterprise-wide and integrated solutions have all opened the door to more sophisticated access control and surveillance systems than ever thought possible. This process can vary depending upon the size of the project, but for a larger scale project, it is not uncommon for Acceptance Testing to take several weeks from start to finish. This timeline can be especially lengthy when the project involves hundreds of devices, such as access control readers, surveillance cameras, video recorders, intrusion sensors, and intercom systems. Most integrated security systems today have been brought through the Acceptance Testing process What is involved in the Acceptance Testing process? While the specific process can vary from integrator to integrator, many follow a similar process with their customer to ensure the system works accurately and that the customer has the proper certification documentation. The initial part of the process typically involves generating a report of each device installed as part of the system. This list enables the systems integrator to systematically test each device ensuring that individual devices are not specific points of failure for the overall system. For example, in a building equipped with a system that automatically releases the egress doors upon the fire alarm activation, it is important to make sure each door’s electro-magnetic locking system is operating properly. The systems integrator would not only test that a door releases when the fire alarm sounds, but also to make sure the access control system is notified if the door is propped open or held open longer than in normal usage parameters. For a door that is also monitored by a surveillance camera, part of the testing would also involve making sure that an image being transmitted to a video monitor is coming from the correct surveillance camera and that the actual angle of the image is what the customer has requested and is correctly labelled as such. If a device does not function as it should, it is then added to a punch list that would require the systems integrator to repair that device within a certain period of time. Once repairs are made, the system integrator would then submit a letter to the client stating that every device has been tested and works properly. It is also important for the integrator that once the testing process is complete to obtain a customer sign off (Certificate of Acceptance) on all systems tested and documentation provided. This limits liability once the system is turned over. From a safety perspective, Acceptance Testing is also used to verify that T-bars and safety chains are installed on cameras that are mounted in drop ceilings. It can confirm that panels are mounted in a room that is properly heated and cooled to avoid major temperature swings. Also, as part of the Acceptance Testing checklist, it can insure that power supplies that drive all the security systems are properly rated with the recommended batteries for back-up. And, that emergency exist devices or card readers are not mounted more than 48-inches above ground. An Acceptance Testing process serves to protect the end user's investment After the project is complete, Acceptance Testing protects both parties involved against liability issues. One example is if the building has a fire and the functionality of the life safety system comes into question. Acceptance Testing can be used to prove that the system was able to function as specified and dispel any concerns about its performance. At that time, all close out sheets are turned in, along with as-built drawings and a manual providing a complete listing of each device and system installed. Today, these manuals not only come in paper form as part of a large binder, but also digital files saved to a disc. The benefit of providing the customer with a binder or documentation of the system is that should the end user/customer replace the person who manages security at the company, valuable information will not leave with that former employee. While this checklist to close out a project may appear trivial at first, it is an important part of the security project process. By implementing an Acceptance Testing program, it serves to protect the end user’s investment, ensuring that the systems integrators hired for the project is knowledgeable and provides quality work. For the integrator, it helps towards the end goal of a satisfied customer.

Latest March Networks Corporation news

March Networks unveils AI-enabled ME6 Series IP Cameras for accurate detection of security incidents and threats
March Networks unveils AI-enabled ME6 Series IP Cameras for accurate detection of security incidents and threats

March Networks, a globally renowned video security and video-based business intelligence solutions, announced that it is pleased to introduce its ME6 Series IP Cameras, a new 6 MP camera line powered by Artificial Intelligence (AI). ME6 Series IP Cameras Incorporating advanced system-on-chip (SoC) technology from California-based company, Ambarella, the ME6 Series use Deep Neural Network processing power to accurately distinguish between people and vehicles. This built-in intelligence is combined with next-generation security analytics for the most accurate, real-time analysis and detection of events. Organisations can enhance security and rapidly respond to incidents with the cameras’ highly accurate notifications on perimeter and zone breaches, loitering, and atypical activity involving vehicles. The ME6 Series’ analytics are embedded on the cameras for convenient out-of-the-box use – no training required. AI-powered analytics The ME6 Series IP Cameras are March Networks most intelligent cameras to date “The ME6 Series IP Cameras are March Networks most intelligent cameras to date,” said Nathan Dinning, Edge Devices Product Manager for March Networks. He adds, “The AI models used in these devices are designed to accurately detect both people and vehicles. This means other objects, for example - a tree branch blowing in the wind, will not inadvertently trigger an alarm. This level of intelligence can greatly reduce false alarms and allow customers to more rapidly and accurately respond to potential threats.” Digital Overlap High Dynamic Range (DOL- HDR) In addition to AI-powered analytics, the ME6 Series also incorporate Digital Overlap High Dynamic Range (DOL- HDR), the latest in HDR sensor technology for superior image quality in highly contrasted lighting conditions. DOL- HDR combines three separate exposures in every frame, delivering only the sharpest, most colorful and well-lit images for customers. Additionally, the cameras offer a new Region of Interest (ROI) feature that allows users to adjust compression levels within identified zones and save on storage. Using this feature, customers can identify zones of high or low importance in the camera’s field of view and apply additional compression in those zones. When combined with March Networks’ existing Low Bit Rate (LBR) feature, the ROI feature can help customers reduce data rates by as much as 65%. Organisations can choose from two distinct ME6 Series models including: The ME6 IR Dome, an indoor/outdoor dome with a 3.6-11mm motorised lens with P-Iris The ME6 IR DuraBullet, purpose-built for outdoor environments, featuring a 2.7-12mm varifocal lens with P-Iris and remote zoom and focus Built-in IR LEDs Both ME6 Series models have built-in IR LEDs that can illuminate objects in the dark at over 130-feet (40 meters) away. Both are also protected by weather-proof (IP66), vandal-resistant (IK10) enclosures to ensure optimum performance in all climates. “We’re very pleased to add the ME6 Series IP Cameras to our portfolio,” said Dinning. “The powerful combination of accurate security analytics with superior image quality will make the ME6 Series a popular choice in both new and existing installations.”

March Networks announces integration between its Searchlight and Zebra Savanna cloud platform
March Networks announces integration between its Searchlight and Zebra Savanna cloud platform

March Networks, a global renowned video security and video-based business intelligence solutions company, is pleased to announce the expansion of its Retail Solution to include fraudulent return investigations through the Zebra Savanna data intelligence platform. March Networks’ new integration – between its Searchlight for Retail software and Doddle, which designs, develops and integrates consumer fulfilment technology – is powered by Zebra Savanna, a cloud-based platform that enables the real-time collection of data from Zebra Technologies’ sensors and devices. March Networks Searchlight March Networks Searchlight logs events from Zebra Savanna and other systems within the retail environment Through this unique collaboration, March Networks Searchlight logs events from Zebra Savanna and other systems within the retail environment, like Doddle, that are powered by the Zebra platform. Searchlight can then match those events with corresponding video clips for greater enterprise-wide visibility. For example, with the Searchlight-Doddle integration, retailers using Doddle can keep a record of all of their product returns in Searchlight. When a customer arrives in-store to return a product facilitated by Doddle’s returns technology, Searchlight records that event, allowing retailers to quickly and easily pull up the surveillance video associated with the return. This allows retailers to visually verify the details of all product returns, including the individuals involved and the condition of the product at the time of the return. Zebra Savanna cloud-based platform In addition, the integration also tracks other retail events such as coupon use at the point-of-sale (POS).  Retailers offering coupons through fulfillment partners like Doddle that are powered by Zebra Savanna can track the full buying cycle in Searchlight. When a customer uses a coupon, it’s recorded in Zebra Savanna and visible in Searchlight, allowing retailers to track the success of promotions offered through third-party vendors. “As more consumers turn to online channels for their retail purchases and returns, these latest Searchlight capabilities bridge the gap between digital and in-store transactions, providing retailers with complete visibility into the buying cycle,” said Jeff Corrall, Director of Strategic Partnerships and Integrations for March Networks. “According to the National Retail Federation (NRF), 11% of retail purchases are returned and an average 8% of returns are fraudulent. With Searchlight, retailers can proactively detect and target this fraud, and recoup associated losses.” Power of integrated data and video “By working with leading retail manufacturers like Zebra Technologies and fulfillment technology companies like Doddle, March Networks is proving the true power of integrated data and video, and its ability to positively impact the retail bottom line.” Returns can have an impact on retailers’ margins, especially over peak periods" “Returns can have an impact on retailers’ margins, especially over peak periods,” said Gary O’Connor, Chief Technology Officer (CTO) at Doddle. “Working with partners like March Networks means the Doddle platform can provide deeper insight. Retailers have the ability to re-convert customers through personalized digital journeys, while also having access to more capability to prevent fraud.” Integration with RFID data from Zebra sensors March Networks’ Retail Solution is used by more than 300 retailers worldwide to facilitate improved efficiency and compliance, reduction in losses and risk management, thereby enhancing customer service and compete more successfully in the market. Searchlight is the centerpiece of the solution that helps retailers to improve performance and profitability through the integration of clear surveillance video, relevant business data, including POS transactions, and highly accurate analytics. March Networks’ Searchlight also integrates with radio frequency identification (RFID) data from Zebra sensors and devices for enhanced product tracking, loss prevention and inventory management. March Networks will showcase the Searchlight for Retail-Doddle integration powered by Zebra Savanna in Zebra Technologies’ booth #3301 at NRF 2020: Retail’s Big Show Expo, January 12-14 in New York, NY.  

March Networks announces integration of Searchlight for Retail software with Cova, the point-of-sale (POS) software system
March Networks announces integration of Searchlight for Retail software with Cova, the point-of-sale (POS) software system

March Networks, a global video security and video-based business intelligence solutions provider firm, is pleased to announce the integration of its Searchlight for Retail software with Cova, the point-of-sale (POS) software system designed specifically for cannabis dispensaries. Cova POS platform The integration enables cannabis businesses using the Cova POS platform to improve performance The integration enables cannabis businesses using the Cova POS platform to improve performance and profitability with Searchlight’s video-based business intelligence. Through its unique combination of surveillance video, POS transaction data and analytics, Searchlight helps retailers gather transformative insights on customer service, operations and promotional efforts. It also alerts businesses to suspect transactions, like frequent voids or unusual discounts, and ties all POS transactions to surveillance video for rapid investigation. “Combining Searchlight’s transaction reporting and business intelligence capabilities with Cova’s POS platform gives cannabis dispensaries one complete solution for sales transactions, loss prevention, business optimisation and compliance,” said Jeff Corrall, Director of Strategic Partnerships and Integrations, March Networks. Searchlight for Retail software integration with Cova Jeff adds, “Both March Networks and Cova are committed to delivering scalable, easy-to-use software that helps cannabis operators fully comply with government requirements. We are pleased to add Cova to our portfolio of integrations for the cannabis market.” Gary Cohen, CEO of Cova Software, said “the seamless integration creates a powerful tool for cannabis retailers. These connected platforms provide visibility and context that helps operators make confident decisions with peace of mind,” said Cohen. “We’re excited to work with partners like March Networks, who share Cova’s commitment to help retailers simplify compliance and gain the insights they need to grow their business.” Radio frequency identification (RFID) tags Tailor-made for the cannabis industry, Cova POS is used by more than 500 cannabis stores Tailor-made for the cannabis industry, Cova POS is used by more than 500 cannabis stores. It incorporates features like an age verification scanner and purchasing limits to help retail dispensaries comply with state/provincial and federal regulations on cannabis sales. The platform is also fully integrated with leading seed-to-sale traceability systems in the U.S. March Networks’ solution for cannabis operators also helps with seed-to-sale tracking and compliance by correlating data from radio frequency identification (RFID) tags with surveillance video in Searchlight. In states like Colorado, where RFID tagging from seed to sale is mandated by law, Searchlight allows cannabis operators to search for tagged product by date, time, product code or serial number and pull up the associated surveillance video. Cannabis supply solutions Searchlight is part of March Networks complete solution for cannabis operators. The solution covers all stages of the cannabis supply chain including cultivation, testing, retail sales and secure delivery. Leading cannabis businesses, including two of the largest cannabis companies in the world, currently use March Networks.