Global MSC Security, leading independent security consultancy, is playing a key role in the overhaul of the surveillance network along the M4 and A55. This massive project will see the existing analogue cameras and network upgraded to a more modern, and future-proof, IP and HD system.
Running from the border near Chester right across to Anglesey, and from the Severn suspension bridges to Swansea in the south, the M4 and A55 are no small stretch of highway to manage. To make sure the nothing is forgotten and the very best solution is put in place a great deal of time has been spent on planning.
Roger Hardiman, Security Consultant at Global MSC, is advising on the project, and speaking about the venture he said, “When the Welsh Transport Technology Consultancy (WTTC), acting on behalf of the Welsh Government, approached us about improving CCTV along the M4 they had already conducted a great amount of thorough research into the array of solutions available on the market. This meant that they were very well informed about the best approach to take and the outcome they wanted. Working closely with the WTTC, we were able to aid in the planning of this project by communicating with key external stakeholders, drawing up the appropriate technical specifications and supporting the tender process for phase one.”
The approach to this modernisation has been separated into two phases; first, upgrading the control rooms, and second, replacing the existing cameras. Phase one is already underway after Amey and URS, as part of their four year contract to improve the Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) throughout Wales, awarded ERH the contract to renovate the control centre using Schneider’s range of Pelco equipment.
Roger said, “The existing systems and hardware currently being used in the control rooms are not suitable to make the most of the material that IP HD cameras can capture, so new technology needs to be put into place before the cameras are installed. To get the best out of an IP system the control centre must be equipped with new digital recorders that have the capacity and disc space to handle high definition images. In addition, the operator work stations are being completely refurbished.”
Following a competitive tender process Pelco products were deemed to be the best in the market and most suitable. Schneider’s specialist engineers will be working closely with ERH on the installation of the Pelco system.
As part of phase one the IT system in use will also be enhanced to support the upgrades and ensure that external stakeholders can effectively access and utilise the system. These stakeholders include organisations such as regional and local police forces and Cardiff City Council among others.
At the time of going to press, phase one was getting well underway. As the project progresses phase two will involve a new tender process to appoint the appropriate organisation(s) to provide and install the new cameras along the M4 motorway and the A55.