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Defending Systems Against Power Problems

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A compelling case can be made for how important security systems are in protecting facilities, staff, faculty and students, and few would disagree that investing in a comprehensive plan to secure a campus is a wise decision. When problems with power, such as surges, spikes, blackouts or brownouts occur, security systems must go on unfazed.

The prospect of protecting all of the systems involved can be daunting, but a granular approach can simplify the process greatly.

There are seven critical areas that must be operational in the event of a power problem:

  1. Cameras & Recording devices — at least one hour of battery backup time from a UPS.
  2. Access Control — low power requirement, can be inexpensively backed up with a small UPS.
  3. Fire Alarm Systems — most states require an on-line UPS solution providing 24 hours of capacity.
  4. Emergency Communications — also subject to state regulations, often up to 24 hours of backup required.
  5. Telephone Systems — communications are critical; backup of these systems includes UPSs for both the main system and workstations.
  6. Intrusion Detection — small on-board battery usually included, but a small UPS should be included for added protection
  7. Loss Prevention — assure theft will not occur during a power anomaly.

A complete security plan for any campus must focus on each area of the system’s requirements for power protection. With each piece working in harmony, the next power problem will not turn into a disaster.

For more detailed information on power protection for security, visit www.minutemanups.com/schoolplanning.

This article originally appeared in the January 2014 issue of School Planning & Management.

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