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CCTV watches the world go by.

CLOSED - CIRCUIT surveillance systems used with other methods of access control support security departments at land transportation facilities, airports, and seaports. They increase security officer efficiency and productivity, and the end result is a more secure facility.

At first glance, securing land transportation facilities may seem to be an overwhelming task, but taken in sections, such facilities can be easily secured with the help of CCTV.

The inner perimeters of bus, train, and subway stations can be defined as the entrance gates to various platforms or terminals. In these areas, CCTV systems are used both as monitoring devices and as deterrents.

CCTV cameras monitor passenger activities and allow security officers to watch for criminal action, disturbances, and passengers who may need assistance. CCTV cameras placed in obvious locations serve as deterrents and provide a sense of security to passengers.

CCTV equipment is also used in storage areas, such as rail yards, to help secure access and deter theft.

Another form of land transportation is the highway system. Highway access is controlled by toll booths, tunnels, and bridges. Perimeter access control is maintained by the governing authorities in these areas.

Access control here involves more than keeping traffic out of an area or limiting access to it. Access control also means ensuring access to an area. It is vitally important to maintain efficient access to industrial, commercial, and financial centers.

Montreal is an example of how important access control is to a major metropolitan area. CCTV cameras are strategically located on both the Champlain Bridge and the Jacques-Cartier Bridge, the main access arteries to the island of Montreal from the south shore.

These cameras are part of a surveillance system that also includes CCTV monitors and VCRs and is controlled by a microprocessor-based control system. This system is used with traffic control signals to keep the traffic flowing during the morning and evening rush hours.

CCTV systems are also used to monitor traffic on heavily traveled sections of highways. This surveillance allows traffic engineers to see problems on their monitors in their control location. From there they can adjust the computer-controlled traffic lights and alert emergency squads.

Not only does this monitoring help traffic engineers but law enforcement officers also benefit. CCTV enables highway patrols to respond more effectively to emergencies, traffic snarls, and dangerous weather conditions.

Law enforcement has recently started using CCTV cameras to monitor unstaffed toll booths. Cameras are monitored by police officers who then alert officers in the area of toll booth violations.

Tunnels provide another interesting application for CCTV systems. Here, because it is unsafe for security personnel to patrol, CCTV is used for traffic control. Cameras in tunnels keep a 24-hour watch over traffic flow, and VCRs permit personnel to quickly review incidents. Officers are able to see traffic jams, fires, and accidents and, therefore, can provide immediate assistance.

A final example of a land transportation facility that uses CCTV systems is parking garages. CCTV systems are used in multilevel parking garages at entrances and exits to ensure safe vehicular passage and inside the garage to prevent vandalism, theft, and assaults.

Land transportation facilities and roadways have widely variable lighting conditions. On highways and bridges, cameras are mounted high on structures in unprotected areas. In tunnels, parking garages, and bus, train, and subway stations cameras are lo-cated in confined, low-light level areas. But no matter the conditions, CCD cameras provide the answer.

CCD cameras are perfect for these applications because of their high sensitivity, reliability, and versatility. These cameras produce high-quality images in a variety of lighting conditions. And many CCD cameras found on the market today can operate in extreme weather conditions.

AIRPORT REGULATIONS have mandated increased security. As a result, more advanced card access systems, badging systems, electronic access control systems, and X-ray equipment have become available. CCTV plays a unique role in this increased security picture, too.

Airports contain a series of perimeters, each requiring various levels of security. The first, outermost perimeter is usually secured by a fence. This fence offers physical protection and deters or delays intruders.

To be more effective, however, detection is necessary. This is where CCTV and video surveillance contributes to airport security. CCTV, in combination with alarm sensors located on the perimeter fence, provides live video of intrusions and enables airport secur-ity officers to respond immediately.

The ever-watchful eye of a CCTV camera also provides an additional service by allowing the officer on duty to quickly detect false alarms due to animals, debris, or casual contact with the perimeter fence.

Within the airport grounds other perimeters are established. The access control applications vary from airport to airport, but CCTV is used at parking lot entrance and exit plazas, rental car facilities, ticket counters, luggage conveyer belts, passenger screening points, boarding areas, and in some instances, on the air field itself.

CCTV is used in all these areas to help security personnel be in many places at once. Through the use of cameras and monitors, security officers are able to make timely and organized assessments of a situation or multiple situations, dispatch appropriate personnel, and call for emergency equipment or backup. Electronic access control and card readers cannot provide this extra set of unblinking eyes.

CCTV is not only helpful in criminal and emergency situations, it also helps airport personnel make passengers' travel more enjoyable. A CCTV camera perched over an unstaffed parking lot entrance allows officers to help confused passengers via intercom.

CCTV use at airports has increased the efficiency, response time, and morale of the security team. These results, combined with the ability to integrate CCTV equipment with other access control systems, are encouraging more and more airport security managers to turn to CCTV systems to help them meet stringent security requirements.

CCTV ALSO HELPS SECURE marinas and seaports. This lessens the need for continual patrol boats and provides a constant image of the secured perimeter of a seaport.

CCTV is also used aboard vessels to protect access. For example, CCTV is used in many large yachts in the Fort Lauderdale, FL, area. Surveillance systems aboard yachts range from simple to complex, depending on the size and layout of the vessel. A yacht of more than 100 feet with multilevels may contain many CCTV cameras, monitors, switchers, and VCRs.

With a monitor on the bridge, a ship's captain can view remote areas of the craft without leaving his or her post. This is useful on shipping vessels for a variety of reasons. Cameras and monitors can be used to survey the engine room to detect dangerous situations such as oil leaks or smoke and to make sure that all the equipment is functioning properly.

Cameras can also be used to view the exterior of the craft to aid in maneuvering and docking. And CCTV can also help ship officers locate personnel in a fast and efficient manner.

From these examples, it is obvious that CCTV systems have a variety of perimeter protection uses at land transportation facilities, airports, and seaports. Not only do they provide immediate surveillance capabilities but they also increase personnel productivity and efficiency.

Jim O'Brien is manager of technical applications for BURLE Industries Inc. in Lancaster, PA.
COPYRIGHT 1992 American Society for Industrial Security
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1992 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:Transportation: Perimeter Security; closed-circuit TV
Author:O'Brien, Jim
Publication:Security Management
Date:Jun 1, 1992
Previous Article:An alternative to regulation.
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