Founded in 1935, Gormost State Unitary Enterprise has designed, constructed and maintained many of Russia's public facilities. The company is responsible for 1,370 properties, including bridges, tunnels, embankments, fountains, municipal engineering facilities, and special installations such as memorials and monuments.
With 2,300 employees, Gormost supervises over 2.0-million square meters of land and facilities. Daily activities include maintenance, repair, and cleaning, as well as ongoing capital upgrades. The city of Moscow – a growing metropolis with a population of over 12 million – depends on Gormost to contribute to the city’s infrastructure with safe, reliable housing and utilities.
Protection is key
Gormost’s primary challenge was the threat of terrorism. Other key issues included vandalism, disorderly conduct, robbery and sabotage – all of which Gormost needed to prevent. A terrorist attack on a Gormost bridge would paralyse traffic, destroy supply systems, jeopardise engineering systems, and could even endanger lives. But how to protect these bridges in a cost-effective and technologically sound way?
Formerly, Gormost had been using guards to police the bridges and other facilities, but this was very expensive and not particularly efficient. Guards simply couldn’t monitor every aspect of a bridge and under-bridge space at all times. In addition, guards are only human: fatigue, loss of attention, unintended errors, and negligence significantly decrease their effectiveness.
Axxon Enterprise for better sight, and better intelligence
After a terror incident at Pushkin Square, Gormost enlisted Axxon’s partner Lilana to install CCTV surveillance (including anti-vandal cameras, a public address system, and signaling lights) in the underground walkways of Moscow. As Lilana has equipped large organisations with fire and safety solutions since 1992, they were a natural choice for Gormost.
The selected system was Axxon Enterprise - Axxon’s integrated security platform. This reinforces and supports the guard's positions by providing them with more information and coverage. Lilana designed a surveillance system that monitored the under-bridge space of Gormost’s major bridges using CCTV Surveillance on the Axxon Enterprise platform.
Results: safety, trust and reliability
"The equipment and the software run perfectly: accurately, correctly, without failures. Axxon is clearly a leader in the domestic security market"
Axxon Enterprise provided Gormost with an effective tool for bridge and under-bridge monitoring that effectively prevents violations and illegal acts. All hidden points are monitored, as well as any potential entrances where an individual could approach and cause harm. Pan-tilt cameras in the middle of long bridges enable guards to see all aspects above ground, and a public address system lets them speak directly to potential trespassers and troublemakers.
The CCTV systems are mounted in heavily-secured cabinets with uninterrupted power supplies to reduce maintenance and damage. And by providing push-button microphones on certain cameras, Gormost lets citizens report problems directly.
Because the installation was so successful, Axxon's Enterprise system was implemented at Gormost's head office, to monitor inside the building as well as the perimeter of the property.
As Victor Serdukov, Head of Equipment and Engineering Systems Operation Department, puts it: "The equipment and the software run perfectly: accurately, correctly, without failures. Axxon is clearly a leader in the domestic security market."
Future plans, real possibilities
Following the success of the previous installation, Gormost turned to Lilana again, this time to secure its bridge engineering facilities. To date, Lilana has provided designs and implementation for 15 Gormost bridges.
Currently, the video surveillance systems in each bridge are self-contained and not connected to each other. Future plans include integrating these systems in a central office control. All information will be monitored in one place, and administrators will be able to control any individual cameras and send announcements through the public address systems. Because the Axxon Enterprise platform is so customisable, flexible and scalable, and built with a distributed architecture, the additional integration is easy to do.
Vladimir Timakin, Director of Lilana, notes that, with Axxon’s help, every aspect of security will be integrated, including CCTV surveillance, sensors (motion, temperature, humidity, vibration), burglar alarms, fire alarms, and access control systems. This will ensure the best possible security for Moscow’s many citizens and visitors.