Arecont Vision Cameras & Milestone Video Assist Prison Security
Roumieh is the largest prison in Lebanon, holding thousands of prisoners within its walls. The size of its prison population and the challenges authorities face around internal crime, corruption, contraband, and inmate unrest have led to continued notoriety of the facility. The prison consists of five buildings and hosts a variety of convicts and detainees. Its population ranges from individuals held on remand to terrorists and high-risk prisoners who pose great challenges to security.
A riot broke out in the cellblock of building A in 2015. The violent disturbance required the dispatch of elite Internal Security Forces who were able to end the incident after several hours. After such an event, officials concluded there was a need to improve both the conditions and the overall security of the institution.
Prison Security Upgrade Project
Guardia Systems was chosen as the systems integrator for the installation of a new surveillance system within the prison. This project is part of an ongoing effort to increase security within the facility while reducing criminal behavior. 139 Arecont Vision megapixel cameras were deployed: the surveillance system provides comprehensive monitoring of all of the buildings, courtyards, and main entrance of the facility. All of the cameras are integrated with Milestone XProtect video management software (VMS) and monitored from the prison control room 24 hours a day.
Arecont Vision’s cameras have simplified installation requirements that reduced the manpower needed for the deployment phase of the project. The cameras are also extremely adept at operating under a variety of lighting conditions, and Guardia Systems specifically identified the availability of both advanced low-light imaging along with true WDR (Wide Dynamic Range) technology as important factors leading to the selection of Arecont Vision for the project:
With widely varying lighting conditions inside the prison, combined with both indoor and outdoor views to be covered by the same cameras, the low light and WDR capabilities of Arecont Vision products were very important to their selection. – Engineer Chadi Rahi, Business Development & Sales Manager at Guardia Systems
Milestone XProtect VMS provides a fully integrated and seamless surveillance system. Arecont Vision and Milestone have years of experience working together and have integrated a multitude of surveillance projects worldwide for a wide range of requirements. Arecont Vision was awarded two Milestone Global Partner of the Year Awards in the last five years.
Through the Arecont Vision Technology Partner Program, new cameras, features, and updated capabilities are pre-tested in the Arecont Vision MegaLab™ with Milestone and other vendor software and hardware. Customer support is also simplified through the use of the MegaLab for the resolution of any post-installation issues.
The video surveillance system is monitored from a Command and Control Centre that accommodates 15 operators. Centre personnel are always on duty watching the feed from the cameras. Whenever an incident occurs in the prison, the Arecont Vision cameras are able to accurately capture it on video for response and action by the authorities.
Our surveillance security system was used several times to investigate specific activities, behaviors, and incidents that occurred during the past period of instability in the prison. – Sandy Issa, Head of Communication at Guardia Systems
Acceptance of the surveillance system has not come without challenges. Prisoners have tried to destroy or damage the infrastructure installed in several of the buildings.
The prisoners have tried to burn the cables and even the cameras themselves. Despite that, the Arecont Vision cameras were still able to record useful footage of the incidents. The images were very clear, even with the resulting smoke and fire. The video surveillance system has performed very well for Roumieh Prison in improving the security environment. – Mr. Rahi
Arecont Vision introduced new vandal-resistant, hardened corner-mount enclosures that can be added for additional camera protection. Their use will better protect newly installed cameras from destruction and vandalism.