“Our 24/7 communications center is very robust and our students and staff rely on it for everything that happens on campus. We also manage our buses out of our comm center,” Petricca says. “It is a one-stop shop that students can come to for escorts, for reporting crime or needing help. Through the comm center we have our fingers in every building on campus.”
The university contracts with a vendor located off campus to answer fire-related calls. The vendor will contact the comm center when a fire alarm is submitted. The campus’s emergency communications system is also managed from the comm center. The system can blast out text messages to students and staff, as well as post messages to flat screen monitors located in all lobbies, cafeterias and residence halls.
Silent intrusion alarms at all university buildings are handled by the comm center. Monitoring personnel can pull up camera feeds where an alarm was initiated and concurrently communicate to a guarding patrol team via radio.
An interoperability solution gives the university’s campus safety department the capability to provide the San Francisco Police Department with real-time feeds from the 700 or so video surveillance cameras located across all its sites.
“If they see anything unusual we will call 911 to get police en route at the same time. Then they are also checking the card access system to see if anybody has swiped in and set off the alarm,” Petricca explains. “Nine times out of 10 something tripped the alarm, but once in a while it is a person breaking in.”
The university deployed its own network and backup modules on which to operate the intrusion alarms, thereby doing away with the cost of traditional phone lines and monthly monitoring.
An interoperability solution gives the university’s campus safety department the capability to provide the San Francisco Police Department with real-time feeds from the 700 or so video surveillance cameras located across all its sites. The university operates a video management system (VMS) by Salient Systems on which a mix of analog and IP cameras are administered. The university continues to add and replace legacy cameras with 2-megapixel, 5-megapixel and in some locations 20-megapixel cameras by Arecont Vision.
Video feeds are recorded in server closets that are deployed at most of the university’s locations. For those sites without a server room, the campus security department leverages its robust network to send video signals to record at other locations.
“We have 30-day video storage. We have so many cameras and cover so many city streets that we capture a lot of crimes in progress,” Petricca says. “The police come to us every week and request video, and a lot of times we help solve crimes.”
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