If you work in an Atmosphere Explosible (ATEX) zone, you know just how valuable peace of mind is. Even the slightest overlooked threat can result in life-threatening situations, and you need to feel confident that your workspace is entirely secured.
As its name suggests, ATEX zones are areas in workplaces where the presence of flammable gasses or combustible dust create the risk of explosive atmospheres. Think laboratories, chemical plants, mines, oil refineries, and textile mills, to name a few.
Unlike those Alexa-enabled, semi-robotic security cams and alarm systems that most homeowners purchase, the commercial security alarm systems in ATEX zones must be of utmost quality and reliability.
Why? According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), more than 200 workers are killed yearly, and more than 5,000 are injured in work-related fires and explosions. Security alarm systems aren’t just there to reassure workers – they’re there to protect them.
At 2 Krew, we’ve been protecting businesses in the Tri-State area for more than 15 years, and we’ve installed many security alarm systems in Pittsburgh ATEX zones. We know first-hand how the right alarm system decreases the risk – and we want to show you.
1. Control High-Risk Areas
A commercial alarm system provides the necessary measures to monitor and control access to ATEX areas. By integrating the system with security cards, biometric authentication, or keypads, operators can easily control who can access ATEX zones. They can even set up controls to only allow people in during certain times.
Commercial security alarm systems can also include intrusion detection features, such as motion detectors and door and window sensors. These devices trigger an alarm in the event of an unauthorized entry and can be linked to the local police department or other emergency response agencies.
These features are crucial in preventing unauthorized people from entering high-risk areas and contributing to an explosion or fire risk. When you’re dealing with an ATEX area, you only want trained, knowledgeable people entering and exiting.
2. Implement Advanced Fire Alarms
Immediate fire alarms are a necessity for commercial security alarm systems in ATEX zones. These fire alarms are designed to provide an early warning of a fire and allow for a fast response.
While typical fire alarms leveraging smoke detectors have a response time of about 45 seconds to 1 minute, an immediate fire alarm system will detect smoke, heat, or other signs of a fire within mere seconds, then alert building occupants and emergency responders.
Immediate fire alarms enable advanced detection and response via highly sensitive and precise detectors that can pick up on even small environmental changes and alert the system to the presence of a fire. The response system, such as shutting down ventilation or alerting the fire department, can be triggered accordingly.
3. Survey Your Entire Property
If a picture speaks a thousand words, it’s no wonder that video surveillance is a key feature of all top-notch commercial security systems. It enables ATEX operators to monitor the activities of people within an area and to provide real-time footage of events that may need to be reviewed later.
Employee monitoring is crucial in improving safety in ATEX areas. Video surveillance provides all-around visibility into the zone and helps monitor erratic or risky behavior. Furthermore, surveillance cameras deter employees from being careless by making it clear to potential wrongdoers that their actions are being monitored and recorded.
4. Set Up Custom Zone Regulations
Not all ATEX zones are the same. Based on the likelihood and duration of an explosive atmosphere, ATEX zones are generally classified into Zone 0, 1, and 2. These are based on the probability and frequency – highest to lowest – of the atmosphere containing dangerous substances in the form of gas, vapor, mist, or dust.
As such, operators want to be able to set up security alarms based on the zone. That’s where advanced, customized systems offer an enormous advantage.
Advanced commercial security alarm systems allow operators to define alarm sensitivity based on zone type. They can also automate the system with specific operating instructions for different dates and times. This enables operators to have specific threat/hazard detection and response procedures and enforce zone-specific mandates for workers.
5. Prepare for Power Outages
Power outages are always a concern in hazardous areas. If your current security systems rely on power to continue operating, you need something more comprehensive and consistent. Otherwise, you run the risk of operating in the dark (literally or not) when a power line goes down or a generator fails.
Given the high likelihood of power outages in many ATEX zones, most high-grade commercial alarm systems are able to operate for at least one day (if not multiple days) without power. They even come with provisions for battery backup, so you can rest assured that the risky space is always adequately protected.
Infrared security cameras with advanced security systems can also help monitor activities inside an ATEX zone during a power outage. You’ll always know what’s going on, regardless of bad weather and sudden power outages.
6. Automatically Alert Authorities
High-grade commercial security alarm systems enable the ‘response’ bit as well as the ‘detection’ element. Automatically alerting authorities is one of the many ways security alarm systems can be configured in tune with your ATEX zone’s specific rules and restrictions.
Many commercial security systems can also be monitored remotely through a web interface or smartphone app. This allows managers to keep an eye on their facilities from anywhere and respond quickly to security incidents.
According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), the average fire department response time in the United States is over five minutes. It can be shorter in urban areas and longer in ruler areas.
Regardless of location, every second counts in a fire emergency. This is where immediate alerts followed by automated notification of authorities can make a world of difference. When a customized, high-end system acts quickly, lives can be saved and risks can quickly be mitigated.
Looking into an Alarm System for Your ATEX Workspace?
Everyone deserves to feel safe in their workplace, regardless of their job. It’s a no-brainer that setting up a high-grade commercial security alarm system is critical to ensuring workplace safety, especially in high-risk areas like ATEX zones.
At 2 Krew Security and Surveillance, we leverage the best technology to offer exceptional commercial security alarm systems to hazardous commercial workspaces in the Pittsburg and Tri-State area.
What makes us different? The short answer is our legacy, which spans over 16 years. We bring qualified experts, personalized services, and professional equipment to each security alarm setup. Our goal is to provide clients with peace of mind, knowing that their property and assets are protected 24/7.
If you’re looking for a security alarm system in Pittsburgh or nearby, reach out to 2 Krew for a quote.