Minn. School District Upgrades Video Surveillance System

The district decided to overhaul their camera system following the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

Hikvision USA Inc., a creator of CCTV and IP video surveillance products, has provided Becker Public Schools in Minneapolis, Minn. a multi-step security upgrade to protect its students, staff, and facilities.

Shortly after the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in December of 2012, Becker Public School District decided that their older surveillance system was in need of a serious overhaul and selected Hikvision video surveillance equipment for the project.

“We were really looking to expand our camera system following Sandy Hook,” Sumre Robinson, network manager for Becker Public Schools, says. “It wasn’t necessarily to increase the numbers of cameras, but to eventually be able to provide access to the cameras to police in an emergency situation.”

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Becker School District called on local integrator Security & Sound to complete the installation, and Hikvision surveillance products were selected. A rigorous implementation process ensued and the critical nature of the project propelled the work. Phil Otto, CFO of Security & Sound in St. Bonifacius, Minn., proposed using a multiple-phase installation with Hikvision surveillance cameras to complete the system. The first stage of execution improved visibility around exterior entries. The second stage saw upgrades to interior areas with IP cameras and expanded coverage of hallways and rooms. Challenges to this project included finding cameras that were both durable and unobtrusive, selecting vandal-resistant products for outdoor areas, and securing zero-light areas at night with infrared cameras.

“As with most schools, the Becker School District had concerns about their parking lot surveillance coverage and video capabilities after dark,” Otto says. “We recommended Hikvision’s DarkFighter line of PTZ cameras in key outdoor areas where evening lighting was an issue but color video was desired. Hikvision’s DS-2DF8223I-AEL 1080p PTZ camera was chosen to cover the parking lots due to its color lux rating of 0.002 and built-in tour and auto tracking features. The camera’s low light capabilities coupled with the ambient light from the parking lot allow the camera to stay in full color at all times regardless of cloud cover or inclement weather.”

In the end, Hikvision’s extensive product line provided a full range of networked cameras that fit every requirement from the administration. On top of that, the Hikvision products also met budget requirements – a crucial piece of the puzzle for most schools and school districts.

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