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Case study

Traka cabinets ease critical key transactions at UK’s utility company Bristol Water
One cabinet may have up to 30 keys to access assets, all managed by Traka
Traka cabinets are networked to a central management point, providing full accountability for all critical key transactions

Safety and security

“Everyone was carrying around bunches of keys - such security was not acceptable when part of the critical National Infrastructure”

Martin Harvey, Security Manager at Bristol Water has responsibility for everything from padlocks on perimeter fences through to risk assessments and management; including all security contracts. “We knew we had to do something about key management - it is a Utility wide problem – Traka has enabled us address these issues immediately and to great effect”.

The new Traka systems give full audit capability of all critical keys across the entire organisation.

Bristol Water is one of 25 Utilities in the UK supplying Drinking Water. It supplies over a million domestic users across 2,400 square kms in Avon, around the Bristol area. As part of the National Infrastructure, it has to manage 14 raw water reservoirs, 16 treatment works, 164 pumping stations and 139 covered treated water storage reservoirs, securing each to ensure against unwanted user entry and to comply with Health & Safety regulations in terms of access to equipment and chemicals as well as property.

Martin says, “It is imperative that we do whatever we need to do, to ensure our assets are secure”. This has been achieved by installing 23 Traka cabinets networked to a central management point, providing full accountability for all critical key transactions.

Key Management is now locally deployed from regional hub locations, so staff don’t have to travel too far (typically no more than 5-10 miles) to get appropriate keys for access to assets.

Any one cabinet may have up to 30 keys to access assets, all managed by Traka.

Every key user is now accountable, responsible and can easily be traced!

“Traka – has caused a culture change in the organisation”

People were used to putting their hand in their pocket and taking out any key – Traka has made the whole process of access more controlled – people are now accountable for their actions.

Why choose Traka?

Everyday use of the system is very easy (178 staff access the key cabinets) as Traka has been integrated to work with the organisations existing access control swipe cards

Martin Harvey explains, “we first came across Traka at IFSEC in 2006 … and quickly realised that our existing systems couldn’t offer us the same degree of control and transaction information as Traka … so in July 2007, after careful evaluation of other systems available, we agreed to run a 3 month trial pilot”. Having rapidly proved to be very successful, Board Level approval was gained to install a further 22 systems across the whole company area.

How quickly did the systems get installed?

It is quite amazing how quickly the whole project was implemented explains Martin. “The order was raised in January. January and February were spent doing pre-install inspections at each site to determine positioning, power requirements and communication links. Installation started at the end of March and the entire physical installation for all 22 remaining sites was completed in just 4 days!” Martin praises the work of everyone at Traka, from the original sales presentation through to the engineers and customer account manager who project managed the complete installation process. “Traka staff is very professional – 22 sites installed in 4 days with dedicated engineers and project managers is impressive – every site working first time – not a single problem apart from one minor communications link. It was great team work, well planned and very well co-ordinated”.

Who manages the system and how easy is it to use?

Everyday use of the system is very easy (178 staff access the key cabinets) as Traka has been integrated to work with the organisations existing access control swipe cards. Whilst staff are typically deployed in local regions; in an emergency or during out of hours work, staff needs to be able to gain access across all regions. Systems are controlled centrally by trained administrators from the Operations Centre. Typically they are responsible for adding or removing users and running management reports. Martin explains “Our initial on-site training was excellent, with all the basics and much more covered. If we need to reconfigure or change settings, which we will occasionally, there is an excellent on-line help facility in the Traka32 software – or we can readily call upon our customer account manager or the Traka support telephone help line”.


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