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Keeping your lights on in emergency.

While the chances are slim that another blackout like the one last August will occur anytime soon, why take a chance?

Localized blackouts are still common and can affect your security system. Without proper backup systems in place your tenants and employees may be at a serious security risk. Therefore, it is important to learn from the experience made apparent by the blackout in order to prevent future security risks.

Many companies had tremendous foresight when they installed backup generators. As a result, many of those companies did not experience any security breaches during last summer's blackout.

A number of building managers and companies have approached Nortronics to install a battery back-up system for their intercom and security systems. The reason is to insure that their communication and security systems will continue to operate even if the power goes down. Keeping those systems functioning will also help maintain communications with residents and prevent break-ins and other criminal acts from occurring.

Fortunately, the overwhelming feeling among many building managers is that they do need a battery backup system because they claim blackouts are an occurrence and why spend money when you don't have to. The cost to install a basic battery back-up system is minimal. In fact, over the life of the battery, which is between five to 10 years, the cost of insuring that your valued employees and tenants and the building is secure in a time of an emergency averages out to pennies a day.

The normal life of a battery back-up could be at least eight hours, which is generally sufficient for most localized blackouts. However, in the event of a major blackout eight hours will at least allow building managers and businesses sufficient time to activate alternate security options, such as mobilizing more security guards to the building to protect the tenants and prevent lack of communication between the building

staff and residents.

Back-up batteries with a longer lifeline of one- to-three days can also be purchased. Also, installation only takes a few hours and it does not interfere with any tenants.

Digital closed circuit TV systems are especially helpful in a blackout at assisting law enforcement catch unsuspecting looters and others participating in criminal activities because it can clearly identify an individual entering a building or identify an incident within the cameras' field of vision--a marked improvement over video tape recording systems, which at best provide a grainy and choppy photograph. In fact, digital systems are recommended because of its proven ability to help recognize and capture threats in record time.

Battery back-up also helps prevent other costly problems. Many times when a blackout occurs and power is restored the surge is so great that the systems acquire significant damage. A battery back-up system helps prevent that costly damage from occurring.

Once installed the battery backup system will automatically activate. By providing uninterrupted communication and ongoing surveillance, back-up systems allow the buildings' staff to concentrate on other issues in a time of emergency and provide tenants a feeling of security, even when the lights are out.
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Article Details
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Title Annotation:Technology Update
Author:Gonzalez, Maria F.
Publication:Real Estate Weekly
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Nov 26, 2003
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