In recent times, we have seen schools and other organisations used as targets in indiscriminate attacks. Finding ways to help prevent widespread loss of life has led to ‘lockdown’ procedures becoming a part of life. Lockdown is now an essential part of most critical incident plans. Lifebell is committed to offering more effective lockdown management solutions that help schools to
Lockdown alerts using existing bell systems are flawed as they signify immediate evacuation – the opposite of what you’re trying to achieve – and require staff to conduct a special pattern of signals from a set location. Instead, Lifebell uses a distinct alarm and can be activated from anywhere in the school, shaving life-saving minutes off your lockdown response time.
Lifebell was developed by the audio & security experts, Anchor Sound & Security Ltd, who found an increasing need for a one-stop lockdown system to be available for school managers. Anchor’s experience as a provider of access control systems to education since the 1980s is coupled with accreditations in leading brands of data networking, CCTV products and a long history of intercom, telephone and audio control solutions.
It is the mission of Lifebell to make affordable and effective defence mechanisms available to every UK school ahead of further attacks.
The year is 390 BC. Almost the entire city of Rome has fallen at the hands of Gauls. All but one place: Capitoline Hill, one of the seven hills of the imperial city. A historic and dramatic escape from an unexpected source was soon to unfold, saving the Romans by the skin of their teeth.
The Romans had fought valiantly for their beloved city, taking all measures and fighting passionately for Capitoline Hill. It is said that as night fell and the weary Romans rested, the Gauls crept up the hill to deliver a final, fatal attack.
However, the temple of Juno at the crest of Capitoline Hill was home to a flock of sacred geese. Their excellent guarding qualities saved the day. Their sharp eyes and sensitive hearing detected the unsuspecting intruders and the night was soon filled with the unmistakable honking alarm calls of the geese.
At the sound of the commotion, the brave Romans were awoken and rushed to defend themselves. The Gauls were driven back and Capitoline Hill was saved. The battle would have been very different without a live warning system. Like those legendary geese, Lifebell systems are not only useful in everyday life, they make all the difference in an unexpected attack.
In the event of a potential attack, a Lifebell call point can be activated by anyone by simply pressing one of the colour coded Lifebell break glass buttons which are located throughout the building.
On activating the button, a voice call is immediately placed from the Lifebell call point to the Lifebell control point. This can be one or more of the control handsets. At the same time, a distinctive lockdown alarm/message can be programmed to immediately sound throughout the premises if desired, which enables the entire site to follow the school’s lockdown procedure.
The person who activated the alert can then immediately describe the threat to the operator and say why they have pressed a Lifebell button. An optional video facility can also be used to make a visual assessment.
The operator takes appropriate action to manage the crisis, including possibly changing the alarm tone/message to the higher alert level to ensure all personnel have adopted their lockdown position.
Additional pre-set buttons on the handset allow activation of the automatic down locking, gate locking, blinds, shutters, etc according to the system design.
During an extended lockdown, voice commands and PA messages can be communicated over the PA system. It is also possible to partially deescalate a dynamic lockdown using this method.
Once the threat is over, or the cause of activation has been remedied, a further button can be pressed to sound an all-clear. The locking system can be cancelled from a button at the Lifebell control point handset, and the call point break glass button can be manually reset.
An attacker entering Ridgeway School could access a large learning zone very quickly. The school needed a means of raising a distinctive alarm instantly once a threat had been spotted and automatic door locking to prevent movement of an intruder around the building inside.
Kenley Campus enjoys the use of adjacent playing fields once forming part of the historic airfield and uses the old parade grounds as a recreation space. This spread of locations means that adopting lockdown positions within the critical time frame is impossible without a site-wide alerting system.
Northwich Campus uses modern open learning spaces as well as traditional historic buildings. The school needed to ensure that lockdown alerts could be heard and recognised instantly, enabling students to move out of open “Learning Zones” to designated refuges within seconds.
School management at Long Eaton wanted to address their need for lockdown safety and required a distinctive alarm. The school needed to ensure that a lockdown alarm would be heard and recognised instantly, enabling students to follow lockdown procedures as fast as possible.
To the casual observer, Linton Park School sits quietly in the scenic Kent countryside, but with the rising incidence of public building attacks, they realised they had to be prepared.