What May Be Undermining Your Active Threat Mitigation Efforts
The glass in your school’s entry doors are tempered by code which is excellent for safety. For security, however, tempered glass is a significant weak point in your security defenses.
Tempered glass is required in entrances because it is safer if ever broken in an accident. Based on the high levels of traffic throughout the day, entryways are areas where many accidental human impacts occur. Tempered glass breaks into tiny fragments as a result of 10,000 pounds of surface tension that is achieved in the tempering process. Since the advent of tempered glass technology, countless lives have been saved because the tiny fragments it produces when broken are far less harmful than large, jagged shards produced by non-tempered annealed glass.
Tempered glass is specifically engineered to release the surface tension upon breaking. This release happens so quickly and explosively, it shocks the glass, shattering it into tiny fragments throughout the entire surface area. This does make it significantly safer, but the glass becomes unstable and can be dislodged with little to no effort.
Another lifesaving technology used in schools is the emergency egress panic hardware on doors. Sometimes called a crash bar, emergency egress hardware is a bar that spans a door with a release mechanism that will open the door from the inside when someone presses on it. This allows people to escape a burning building more easily in thick smokey conditions that cause a rushing crowd to egress in a panicked state.
If tempered glass and panic egress hardware have been so successful in saving lives, how can this be problematic?
Problem: An active assailant will generally attempt to enter a school through a door. If that door is locked the intruder will likely choose the easiest way to gain access – through a vulnerable window or glass door. Even if your school is locked, the panic hardware can be easily activated to unlock the doors if a glass door is broken. The tempered glass will shatter upon impact and fall away easily. The assailant need only reach through and pull on the crash bar to open the door and walk in. Security window films are often used to reinforce tempered glass, but research shows that security films can be easily punctured with a tool such as a hammer or butt of a rifle.
Solution: New unbreakable glass technology from security products manufacturer Riot Glass can be installed in place of tempered glass. A would-be intruder’s attempts to break the glass will fail and tools such as hammers or metal pry bars will only bounce off the surface of Riot Glass. The company also provides a special framing to mount within the door or window frame that secures the unbreakable glass so it cannot be dislodged. The company also sells heavier ballistic-grade glass that can convert a regular window or door into a bullet resistant version.
How do you buy Riot Glass?
This life-saving technology can be purchased directly from the manufacture who does security consulting at no charge for schools, or through their national network of authorized installer/dealers who can come to your properties and survey for estimating and engineering purposes, and then return to install the product if approved.
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