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News

Surveillance upgrade at northern English shopping centre

Panasonic : 10 February, 2009  (Application Story)
Panasonic enhances image quality and coverage at shopping centre with dome camera installations and upgrade to digital image recording
Panasonic security has been installed at Birchwood Shopping Centre in North West England as part of a complete upgrade of its existing analogue surveillance system.

Situated in the heart of Birchwood, Cheshire its essence as a busy suburban Shopping Centre drawing 100,000 shoppers a week and with a fantastic variety of retailers, means that security for the purpose of crime prevention, staff and public safety is always high on the agenda.

After a successful term using an analogue Panasonic security surveillance system, the Centre's management began its search for a system upgrade when its existing lease term ended. Although reliable, Birchwood's Operations Manager Claire Grundy found the old system lacking when compared with new digital systems, specifically the length of time taken to find information.

With its standing relationship with installer Elite Digital Systems, and previous positive past experience with Panasonic equipment, a site survey was conducted using a Panasonic demonstration van to demo the latest in digital CCTV equipment. The quality of the images from the digital cameras won over Birchwood Shopping Centre's management and the relationship with Elite continued, winning the tender decided by an external consultant to complete a total upgrade of the existing system. Elite Digital Systems' Systems Solutions Manager, Ian Duncanson, specified the system for the Centre to fulfil its list of objectives. These included making sure that the Centre's dual use as both consumer and commercial property was met and increasing the coverage throughout the centre and its four car parks, a total of 365,000 square feet. A total of four additional PTZ dome cameras were installed over the original installation, the WV-CW960 was able to provide a zoom of 30:1 to provide better total coverage and improved detail.

In total, Elite engineers connected eleven Panasonic WV-CW960 all weather vandal resistant dome cameras, five Panasonic WV-CP484 fixed cameras, six Panasonic WV-CS950 super dynamic dome cameras, two WV-CP244 fixed cameras and one WV-CW474 internal vandal resistant dome camera, all are digitally recorded by two Panasonic WJ-RT416 real time Digital Video recorders (DVR), populated with 2.5 Terabytes of hard disc storage. This provides Claire Grundy and her team with 14 days of stored footage.

In addition to the new cameras, Elite Digital Systems also kitted out a new control room with one Panasonic 42in plasma and two 20in LCD monitors. This allowed 16 of the cameras with key locations to be monitored on the main screen and 11 split across the two LCD screens. Taking control of the cameras via a Panasonic WV-CU650 system controller, the ten strong security team can easily search through recordings quickly and efficiently. The main control room is supplemented by monitoring stations located in three of the management offices, including that of Claire Grundy. This allows the management team to view any camera at any time in case of emergencies.

The uses of the new system for Birchwood Shopping centre are multi-faceted. From a security perspective, the system allows the Centre's management to aid the local police with high quality JPEG images to assist with the prosecution of criminals. This has been proved in situations of theft from the retail stores and also break-ins to the actual centre after closing.
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