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CHUBB SPORTS ADVANCED TECHNOLOGY AT MANCHESTER SCHOOL
(14th January 2010) A comprehensive CCTV system from Chubb Security is protecting Manchester’s newly built Wright Robinson College from unwanted acts of vandalism, and boosting the school’s administrative function. Chubb is part of UTC Fire & Security, a unit of United Technologies Corp. (NYSE:UTX).
Wright Robinson is a specialist college of Sport and the Arts and a member of the Specialist Schools and Academies Trust. In 2007 the college moved out of its old buildings and into new premises on adjacent grounds, which was formally opened in late 2008 by the Prime Minister, Gordon Brown.
Previous experience with vandalism and petty crime from intruders at evenings and weekends meant the school was determined to have the very best security for its new site, says the college’s Christine Shaw: “More than this,” she says, “we also wanted the CCTV system to act as an effective tool in supporting the daily running and administration of the school, and in improving health and safety.”
Chubb Security designed, commissioned and installed a 180-camera CCTV system to cover the school and its grounds. The design carefully mapped the probable flow of students and visitors around the buildings to ensure that each camera was well placed for maximum coverage. Images are transmitted via Unshielded Twisted Pair (UTP) cabling to a dedicated CCTV control room and additional control points throughout the school. UTP cabling is the most common cable used in computer networking.
“Our IT contractors were unhappy with the transmission of large bandwidth video over the IT network, so we were looking for an alternative to IP,” explains Ms Shaw. “Chubb recommended a wired solution, which built on the UTP cable network already installed to offer a cost-effective and scaleable solution.”
In addition to protecting school property and detecting unwanted intruders, the cameras have also proved their worth as an aid in the day-to-day running of the school. “Covering all corridors and stairwells and the sports hall, dining and recreational areas, the cameras allow a birds-eye view of student movement,” continues Ms Shaw. “As the pupils are very well behaved, any deviance from the norm is easily detected.”
When there has been an incident, such as a student dropping litter in the corridors, the issue has been easily resolved, Christine says: “It is also a useful tool when discussing incidents with parents as they can see the high-resolution footage for themselves. It is even simple to burn a copy of the footage onto disk if required.”
Alongside the main control room in the school’s administration area, each head of year has access to a control facility, enabling them to monitor all areas of the building. “This is useful at lunchtime,” Christine continues, “when it is important that each year-based sitting progresses smoothly. The cameras allow the heads of year to spot delays before they develop and hold up the flow of pupils through mealtimes.
"If staff have to deal with incidents in corridors, the system allows them to handle situations confidently, knowing the actions of all parties are being recorded. And at home time, we can also ensure students leave safely and sensibly, with the cameras placed to monitor them leaving the building and boarding the buses outside.”
The school has surveyed its pupils asking them what they liked and dislike about the new school. “Almost everyone stated that they liked the fact that we had CCTV throughout the school,” she concludes “as it made them feel safe and secure.”