Hardware Selection for Increased Security

There are many options when it comes to ensuring safety and security in schools. Glass and glazing products are just the start. Hardware can also play a big part. According to Doug Thompson, general manager with Rockwood Manufacturing, part of ASSA ABLOY, there are multiple options that can be saved in school's for security purposes. 

"The interest in glass has increased greatly in schools. Natural daylight improves the environment and also the learning experience," says Thompson. "Security has become paramount as the rash of school violence and bullying has made this issue front and center. While glass is physically easier to penetrate than steel, there are advantages to being able to see what's going on inside of rooms in public settings like this."

Many product options are available that can be incorporated into school designs that can help increase the level of security.

“Panic devices like our PDU 8000 are designed to allow egress from buildings while maintaining a very clean aesthetic. Ensuring people can exit a building is just as important-if not more-than preventing someone from entering.” Says Thompson, who explains the company spent a lot of time on this device to upgrade the security over previous devices. “The most notable thing is our flat latch design of a roller wheel on a latch. The testing we have done clearly showed that the flat latch as being superior, especially in openings that require an electric strike. Proper installation is also critical to security, and one of the things we learned was installers did not always set the latch that clearly shows the minimum and maximum amount of engagement of the device.”

Locking door pulls have also become very popular. These can be used on classrooms of offices. Some of these also have an anti-pick function that prevents someone from simple being able to push up the bolt.

Another option is center lock housing. This clamps onto a cut-out in the glass door and allows for use of a mortise lock and lever on the door. Various functions are available in these latches: Passage, Entry and Office. With the Office function, someone can quickly secure the door with a thumb turn to keep people out while still allowing quick exit via the lever handle.

In addition, the Adams Rite 1050 digital door lock clamps onto glass and does not require special prep work. It’s used on single or double doors and has an interface that looks similar to an iPhone.

Looking forward, school designs will likely continue to call for more and more levers of security and access control. This, according to Thompson, will likely mean an increased need for the integration of security products into schools.

“As daylighting is a growing trend, we will also see a growth in glass door and glass wall systems in this environment,” he says. “It will become increasingly important to integrate security devices, systems, and monitoring into glass wall systems. Wireless technology (such as solar) may become an important pillar in this area, as well.”


Article written by Ellen Rogers of USGlass magazine

Article located on page 46 of the June 2017 issue of USGlass Magazine.

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