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Security Threat Assessment For Schools, Homes, Buildings, Banks etc

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We live in a world where we are constantly surrounded by threats, both perceived and real. Threats to our property or our well-being are at the top of the list of risks we face in our day-to-day lives. Business owners and homeowners both face the possibility of burglary and theft, government facilities and airports are confronted with terrorist attacks, even schoolchildren don’t feel safe in their classrooms. One of the ways we can improve security to protect ourselves and our property against these types of dangers is through security threat assessments.

What Is a Threat Assessment?

A threat assessment, as applied to a building’s security, is the practice of determining the seriousness of potential events, the likelihood that such scenario will occur, and how to mitigate that threat on your property. Threat assessments are conducted on a property by security specialists to evaluate the actual risk of perceived threats and make security upgrade recommendations. A perceived threat could be anything from a smash-and-grab theft to an active shooter scenario, or it could be a natural threat, such as a hurricane or earthquake.

When a security professional conducts a threat assessment, they will speak to the property owners to discuss their concerns and security goals. They will also carry out a thorough examination of the property in order to identify vulnerable points of entry and make recommendations about how to strengthen the building’s defenses to protect against potential events. These recommendations often include upgrading the level of glass security of a building’s windows and doors.

Essential parts of a threat and risk assessment:

  • Evaluate a complete spectrum of threats (manmade and natural)
  • Make a list of credible threats and scenarios
  • Assess and evaluate existing security countermeasures
  • Quantify the potential impact of specific threats
  • Suggest upgrades to building defenses (like security glass)
  • Re-evaluate perceived threats after security upgrades

Why Are Security Threat Assessments Necessary?

A threat assessment helps you plan for and protect your facility and critical infrastructure against common threats to your specific facility. For example, a threat assessment of a government building might determine that it needs security upgrades to protect against terrorist attacks, which can involve both active shooters and bombs, as well as natural disasters. Both these types of threats require certain security responses, which a threat assessment will define.

When it comes to human threats, a threat assessment looks at things like the attractiveness of a particular facility as a target for certain risks and how effective the building’s current security measures would be in the face of different threats. For instance, if you own a jewelry store and are concerned about break-ins and burglary, a security threat management professional would examine things like your entry points, storefront glass, and security systems. They would then be able to make recommendations about how to upgrade your defenses by doing something like retrofitting your windows with security glass.

Examples of potential threats:

  • Break-ins and burglary
  • Smash-and-grab theft
  • Armed robbery
  • Active shooters (such as school shooters or insider attacks)
  • Bomb blasts
  • Terrorist attacks
  • Natural disasters (like storms, hurricanes, and earthquakes)
  • Civil unrest (including rioting and looting)

Who Can Benefit From a Security Threat and Risk Assessment?

Anyone who owns a business or operates a facility that faces any level of man-made or natural threat can improve their security through a security threat assessment. Threat management can protect against theft of property and merchandise, damage to infrastructure, and injury or loss of human life. Threat management doesn’t just benefit businesses and commercial facilities. Homeowners also face threats, mainly break-ins and burglary.

A thorough inspection and evaluation of your business, facility, or home can provide you with the recommendations needed to defend it against all plausible threats. For example, upgrading vulnerable windows on your home or business with laminated security glass is one of the best ways to protect your property from break-ins. Other types of facilities might be more concerned about violent attacks, in which case a security expert can provide suggestions to fortify points of entry against an armed individual attempting to get inside and carry out an attack.

Examples of facilities that can benefit from threat and risk assessments:

  • Retail stores
  • High-end luxury homes
  • Government buildings
  • Banks
  • Office campuses
  • Schools
  • Businesses or homes in high-crime areas

Threat Assessment in Schools

It’s hard to discuss threat assessments without mentioning the existence of school threats. It’s an unfortunate reality that children living in the US have to think about and deal with practically every day. A school threat assessment can help determine the probability of a school shooting happening and the best ways to protect the lives of students and staff if such an event should occur.

One method of addressing a school threat is attempting to prevent a violent act from occurring in the first place. This is typically done by an interdisciplinary team including school mental health professionals, administrators, and school or local law enforcement. These trained professionals attempt to identify threats or individuals who pose a risk of violence, then determine the threat level and appropriate response.

However, many times there is no prior indication that a violent attack will occur at a school, and there is no single profile of an individual who will cause harm to others. In this case, a threat assessment by a security professional can help come up with the best ways to upgrade a school’s defenses to minimize harm in a violent attack scenario. For instance, putting ballistic-grade doors and windows in place can save lives by keeping an active shooter out of classrooms and delay them long enough for law enforcement to arrive and deal with the situation.

conducting threat assessment in school is a security measure that involves being proactive

Conclusion

Just because real threats exist doesn’t mean we have to live our lives in constant fear. Our personal and property security can be upgraded to improve peace of mind and mitigate damages in the unfortunate event of a hazardous incident, whether man-made or natural. Conducting a threat and risk assessment is the first step towards making these upgrades and protecting ourselves from harm.

If You Are Not Using Riot Glass to Secure Your Windows, You Are Vulnerable to Crime

By | Blog

Windows are the most vulnerable points in any home or commercial facility. So, if your home or business is fitted only with standard glass, it is very susceptible to all types of crime, including break-ins by burglars or more serious attacks by active shooters. If you worry about the threats to your property and personal safety posed by crime, one of the best ways you can protect yourself is by fortifying your windows with Riot Glass.

What is Riot Glass?

Riot Glass is a type of laminated security glass that is 5x stronger and 100x stiffer than regular security glass. It acts as a shield against deliberate attacks and makes forced entry extremely difficult. Riot Glass panels fit right on top of existing glass and are virtually invisible once installed.

Riot Glass laminated glass and containment-grade clear panels can be retrofitted onto most existing window frames. There is no need to remove your existing glass or replace the frames, unless weight is a concern. Riot Glass products are designed to face three main threat categories, which are forced entry, active shooter, and bomb blast scenarios.

Is Security Glass Different from Safety Glass?

Security glass refers to a range of laminated glass products designed to withstand intentional attacks. These types of glass products are highly shatter-resistant and meant to delay would-be intruders long enough for those on the inside of the glass to react and for first responders to arrive. Security glass is also highly effective at protecting against burglary, smash-and-grab theft, rioting, and looting.

Safety glass, on the other hand, is not designed to protect against attacks and crime. One of the most common types of standard safety glass is architectural tempered or toughened safety glass. It is stronger and more resistant to shattering than regular architectural glass, but will not stop an intruder. Tempered safety glass is designed to break apart into small harmless fragments instead of sharp dangerous pieces, making it safer than normal glass for those on the inside.

Protect Yourself and Your Property Against Crime with Riot Glass

Unlike regular glass and safety glass, Riot Glass security panels won’t fall away when cracked or broken. Even the non-ballistic, containment grade panels are impenetrable to attacks from common hand tools like hammers, axes, and crowbars. They will even maintain their strength when riddled with bullet holes. Whether you’re concerned about simple break-ins and burglary or are worried about more serious ballistic attacks and bomb blasts, Riot Glass products will make you less vulnerable.

Forced Entry Protection

Riot Glass containment grade ArmorPlast shields are ideal for businesses that stock valuable merchandise or are at a high risk of smash-and-grab theft or burglary. These panels can also be applied to residential properties and are a popular burglary prevention method for high-end luxury homes. Riot Glass is virtually unbreakable using any common break-in methods, so would-be intruders are deterred and move on very quickly.

Protection Against Active Shooters

Riot Glass also offers a full range of ballistic grade ArmorPlast panels, for when potential threats are greater than just burglary. Ballistic resistant Riot Glass is available in various grades and designed to withstand multiple impacts from bullets of different calibers without shattering. Riot Glass keeps shooters from gaining access to a facility and provides precious additional time for individuals inside the facility to call the police and either escape or barricade themselves inside to wait for the authorities.

Bomb Blast Protection

Riot Glass ArmorPlast shields also provide effective bomb blast mitigation. If a bomb blast is a real threat to your property, you can have a blast-consultant assess the threat level and tell you what GSA performance level your property needs to meet. You can then retrofit all your existing glass with Riot Glass to keep it intact and keep those inside safe in the face of a bomb blast.

Who Can Benefit from Riot Glass?

Riot Glass is available for all types of residential and commercial applications. It can be either retrofitted on an existing property or installed as part of new construction or remodels. No matter how big or small the threat of crime is to your property, Riot Glass products will make you feel safer and allow you to sleep better knowing your windows are protected against criminals.

If you’re a business owner, Riot Glass is an essential part of a complete security strategy. Riot Glass laminated security glass provides an essential barrier to protect valuable merchandise and equipment from burglars who would typically gain easy entry to your business through a window. Riot Glass is also an excellent defense in the event of civil unrest, such as rioting, and the looting that can come along with it.

Typically, all it takes is a well-aimed brick or a blow from a metal pipe to take down a storefront window. However, with Riot Glass in place, this is no longer a concern. Even if a Riot Glass panel cracks, it will stay in place and shield any existing glass behind it, preventing shattering and keeping looters and vandals out of your business.

For homeowners, Riot Glass can provide essential peace of mind when you’re away from home on business or vacation. If you happen to be inside during an attempted break-in or attack of some kind, Riot Glass is a shield between you and your family that keeps the bad guys out and keeps all of you safe inside. Riot Glass can be the difference between a violent encounter and having enough time for the authorities to arrive and deal with the situation.

Riot Glass is the Best Way to Reinforce Your Windows Against Criminals

Other solutions like bars, gates, and screens can be unsightly and reduce your visibility. Riot Glass provides you with the highest level of protection without sacrificing any of the visibility through your windows or changing the appearance of your property. Use Riot Glass to protect the vulnerable windows on your home or business as part of a complete crime deterrence and prevention strategy.

laminated glass vs tempered glass

The Differences Between Laminated Glass & Tempered Glass

By | Blog

There has been an increase in the demand for “safety glass” and other glazing products to keep homes and commercial buildings safe. One of the major safety concerns for commercial building owners has been forced entry. While large doors and windows are essential and aesthetically valuable for such buildings, buglers often target these parts, which are the Achilles heel of homes and buildings. As such, glass companies continue to come up with better glass products to meet the needs of safer glazing products by homeowners and commercial building owners.

Laminated glass and tempered glass are the two common glazing products used in the prevention of forced entry. Homeowners and commercial building owners need to understand the differences between the two glass types before choosing the best one for their needs.

Laminated Glass vs Tempered Glass

Laminated and tempered glass differ by a number of features. Such features influence the choice of glass type for homeowners and commercial building owners to install on their doors and window systems. Here are the main points of difference between laminated glass and tempered glass.

1. Manufacturing Process

When discussing laminated glass vs tempered glass, the manufacturing process pretty much separates the two. Laminated glass is made by bonding one or two layers of glass with a layer of resin, commonly polyvinyl butyral (PVB). The PVB is the interlayer that holds the glass layers together, even when the glass breaks or impacted by a great force. The process of producing laminated glass involves bonding these glass layers and the interlayer under heat and pressure. This produces compact glass that holds in place rather than shatter when hit by attackers and buglers.

On the other hand, the production of tempered glass differs. Tempered glass is produced in the process of toughening standard glass to give stronger glass. In fact, this toughening process makes it several times stronger than laminated glass. This process often involves heating, high-pressure, and chemical treatment procedures. These treatments give the glass a better balance of internal stress, which makes it better at resisting force up to certain levels. Despite its strength, tempered glass breaks and shatters when impacted by huge forces from bullets or other weapons.

2. Strength

Another way to look at tempered vs. laminated glass is by comparing their strength. The strength of these two safety glass types derives from their production process. While both of them fall into the category of “safety glass” for homes and commercial buildings, their strength differs, and each has a unique way of preventing forced entry or protecting building occupants.

Laminated glass is deemed strong since it can stand the force of a rock or bullet without shattering and falling off the window or door frame. Its strength can be attributed form the glass layers and the resin used as the interlayer. What’s more, the pressure and heating process adds to its strength and makes the glass up to 5 times stronger and 100 times stiffer than the standard glass.

On the other hand, tempered glass is known for its strength and resistance towards force. Throughout the manufacturing process, the glass goes through stages of heat, pressure, and even chemical treatment to make it tougher than regular glass. While considering the strength to withstand breakage, tempered glass is considered to be stronger than laminated glass.

3. Applications

When looking at the laminated glass vs. tempered glass comparison, the application of the glass types may also be considered. Due to their strength difference, their application often differs. Depending on the user preference, it is possible to have laminated glass windows and tempered glass windows.

Homeowners and commercial building owners who seek security for their homes and valuables should consider laminated glass. Laminated glass windows and doors are especially essential for commercial buildings, where there is a need to prevent forced entry and safeguard valuables. The interlayer in laminated glass creates a significant barrier, which makes it difficult for buglers and attackers to breach.

Tempered glass, on the other hand, is best used for interior safety glass applications. Homeowners can, therefore, use it for the various window and door systems, such as shower and tub doors. It may also be used for hotel buildings consisting of conference rooms. Tempered glass also suits skyscrapers and commercial buildings with large windows. This way, the views outside are not distorted, and building occupants are protected from elements such as storms.

4. Custom Display is Only Possible With Laminated Glass

Besides security purposes, glass is also used for many other applications. Lately, laminated glass has become a favored material in indoor and outdoor graphic projects. Photography and digital images have become common choices for incorporating design elements into architectural glass, and laminated glass has become the best glass to incorporate such design elements.

Given the presence of the interlayer in laminated glass, designers can now use online design tools to include visual imagery on the glass. As such, laminated glass continues to be used by brands who wish to create a great impression on the public.

Other than architectural and safety purposes, tempered glass has seen limited applications as compared to laminated glass. Since tempered glass is purely made of glass, the incorporation of digital elements is not possible, as it is the case with laminated glass. While this discussion may not come up often, the tempered glass vs. laminated glass comparison may often highlight such tech-based applications of laminated glass.

5. Laminated Glass Is More Pricey

While making the laminated vs. tempered glass contrast, the cost of these types of glass also comes into play. Due to the complexity of the manufacturing process and the materials involved, laminated glass becomes more expensive than tempered glass. The process of manufacture involves the use of a resin material and glass panes. The heating and pressure treatment processes also add to it being more costly than tempered and standard glass.

Tempered glass is also costly to purchase, definitely more expensive than the standard glass, but less costly than laminated glass. Depending on the preferences of a building owner, the cost is another point of difference that dictates the choice between laminated and tempered glass.

Conclusion

The laminated glass vs. tempered glass comparison comes up often when building owners and homeowners are considering the best option for their window and door systems. Some of the main features to look at to differentiate the two include the make-up, strength, cost, and the intended purpose for the glass installation.

How to Protect Schools From an Armed Intruder – the Glass Type Matters

By | Blog

A growing number of high-profile school shootings in the US over the past couple of decades have brought school safety and security into the spotlight. Sadly, this doesn’t seem to be something that is going to change anytime soon. Whether it’s an elementary school, middle school, high school, or university campus, all school administrations should put plans and security measures in place to protect students and staff in the unfortunate event of an armed school intruder on the premises.

How Can Educational Facilities Prepare for School Intruders?

Even with the best preventative measures in place, it’s impossible to guarantee that any school won’t be the target of a violent individual. With that in mind, there are methods to make schools safer and better prepared to deal with such an incident. The more prepared staff and students are, and the more security measures in place, the smaller the threat posed by an attacker is. Let’s take a look at some ways schools can improve safety and security on their campuses.

Encourage Awareness and Communication

The worst way to prepare for school intruders is to ignore the issues that cause school shootings in the first place. Administrations should provide training to their staff on how to identify warning signs that a student may carry out a violent attack on school grounds. Information on the matter should also be provided to students and parents, along with a clear procedure for reporting concerns about a student to the administration. That way, administrators can conduct a threat assessment together with mental health professionals and law enforcement to evaluate the risk and probability of a violent incident.

Well-trained staff, along with informed students and parents, can be all it takes to prevent a tragic incident from occurring on campus. Though there is no single indicator that someone is a risk to school safety, an attack rarely occurs without some prior warning signs. If people know how to spot the signs of mental health issues and indicators of violent behavior, as well as to know how to communicate about these issues, tragedies can be prevented.

Practice a School Intruder Drill

A school intruder drill can save lives when a school is under attack by a gunman. Schools have been doing fire drills, earthquake drills, and other types of safety exercises for decades, and the same principles can be applied to an intruder drill. The idea is that if students and staff are drilled with safety information and practice what to actually do in case the unthinkable happens, the risk is greatly minimized.

Training for an armed intruder can consist of various components, such as lockdown drills, evacuation drills, and active shooter exercises. A lockdown drill, for example, teaches staff and students how to lock and barricade themselves inside a room, stay away from windows and doors, and hide from armed intruders until the authorities arrive. On the other hand, evacuation drills teach students and staff how to leave the building as quickly as possible and get to safety.  

An active shooter drill can include training on things like how to remain calm, how to deal with the injured, how to help others get to safety, and how to confront and disarm an attacker if it comes down to it. There is no one-size-fits-all model for an intruder drill, and it is up to every school and administration to evaluate their needs and come up with an appropriate model. However, a complete drill should include elements of all the different types of exercises mentioned above.

Upgrade Window and Door Glass with Security Glass

The most vulnerable points of entry in any facility are its windows and doors. They are also often the most overlooked areas when it comes to building security. Closing and locking windows and doors provides a false sense of security because the reality is that standard window glass breaks incredibly easily. All it takes is one blow from a hard object or a single bullet to shatter the glass, providing an armed attacker with easy access to the building or a room within.

Schools can beef up their security against school intruders by upgrading vulnerable glass with a variety of security glass products. Obviously, it isn’t always practical or affordable for an educational facility to completely replace their windows and doors. However, many security glass products can be retrofitted onto a building, right on top of its existing glass, to improve overall security and protect against intruders.

The three main types of protective glass products that schools can use to upgrade their windows and doors are safety and security window film, laminated security glass, and polycarbonate panels. All of these products will prevent the windows from easily shattering apart and can even resist bullets to varying degrees. This delays attackers from gaining entry to buildings and rooms, which gives students and staff valuable time to react and time for the police to arrive on the scene.

To choose the best glass type for the facility, a school must weigh a threat assessment against the available budget. A security professional can conduct a threat assessment to evaluate the building’s existing defenses, point out vulnerable points in an active shooter scenario, and come up with recommendations to improve security to save the lives of students and staff. The administration can then decide on the appropriate type of security glass to keep intruders out.

Conclusion

There is no way to be 100% sure that your school is safe from violent intruders, but there are ways to prepare and protect lives. There are certainly more ways than this article has covered, but we’ve gone over some of the most effective methods, including promoting awareness and communication to prevent incidents, holding drills to prepare students and staff, and reinforcing windows and doors with security glass to keep attackers out. These methods should be included as part of any comprehensive school safety and security strategy to minimize the risk of injury and loss of life.

how to prepare home for extended vacation or long absence

How To Prepare Your House For Extended Vacation or Long Absence

By | Blog

Summer is the time of year when most people tend to go on vacation. It also happens to be the time when most burglaries occur. In order to get the most out of your relaxing summer vacation without having to worry about your home and prized possessions, it’s important to take precautions and vacation proof your home before you pack your bags and head out of town. Here are ten of the best ways to prepare your home for an extended or summer vacation (or some other long absence)

1. Install a Home Security System

Get a professional home security system that includes an alarm system and video surveillance installed before you go on vacation. This will allow you to monitor your home security right from your smartphone and is a big deterrent to would-be burglars. Make sure that surveillance cameras are placed in easily visible locations. Also, put up stickers and decals to advertise your home security system outside near the most obvious entry points like doors and ground floor windows.

2. Set up Light Timers

Purchase several light timers to install in different rooms to prepare your house for a long absence. Pick timers with the option of having lights turn on and off at random times so it’s more difficult for would-be burglars to tell if you’re home. If you’re leaving your house empty while on holiday vacation, this is an affordable and easy-to-install home security measure that makes it appear as if someone is present, especially at night, when burglars are prowling through neighborhoods.

3. Put up Motion Detector Lights

Add motion sensing security lights to the outside of your home to illuminate easy access points like your driveway, front door, walkways, backyard, and back or side doors. The lights will turn on if anyone tries to approach your home to break in while you’re gone and take away the cover of darkness to deter them. You could also install smart outdoor lighting that you can turn on and off remotely or schedule to come on at night.

preparing house for extended vacation or long absence requires careful planning and active monitoring even while on holiday

4. Maintain Your Landscaping During Your Absence

Trim back bushes and shrubs that could provide potential cover for burglars and cut your lawn before you leave. Keep any landscaping services you normally use scheduled during your absence so nothing appears out of the ordinary while you’re gone. A tidy yard and activity around the outside of your home will make it look more occupied and like less of a potential target for a break-in.

5. Have Someone Stop By Regularly

Give a key to a friend, relative, or trusted neighbor and ask them to swing by your place every day or two. Have them pick up any mail so it doesn’t accumulate and give away the fact that you aren’t home. They can also perform any minor tasks you need done while you’re gone like watering plants or putting out the trash and recycling. Also, if burglars are monitoring houses in your neighborhood, someone coming and going regularly and signs of activity are deterrents to burglary.

6. Don’t Leave Hide-a-Keys

Hide-a-keys might seem convenient to you, but burglars know where to look for them. Don’t make it easy for a would-be burglar to walk into your home by leaving them a key. Leave spare keys with family, friends, or neighbors instead, even when you aren’t on vacation. The convenience of a readily available hide-a-key is not worth the risk of losing your valuable possessions.

whether it's a one day trip of leaving house for 3 months, don't hide your keys on the property

7. Hide Valuables Out of Sight

Remove valuables from where they can be seen through windows or doors to protect your home from burglary. Put smaller items away in drawers or closets and move large items to different rooms where they aren’t easily visible. Don’t forget to conceal any high-value items in your garage as well. If a burglar can’t see anything of value, they are less likely to target your home for a break-in.

8. Don’t Advertise Your Vacation Or Long Absence on Social Media

Though it might be tempting to let everyone on your social networks know where you’re going on summer vacation, it’s better to keep a low profile and not advertise that your home will be empty. Wait until you get back from vacation to upload your beach photos and tell everyone about how much fun you had. Also, make sure your address is not posted on any of your social media.

when preparing home for long absence, don't advertise your vacation on social media

9. Ensure That All Your Doors and Windows Are Secure

Test out all your doors and windows a week or two before you go on vacation to ensure they are all in working order. This way, you can get anything that isn’t closing or locking properly repaired before you leave town. Double-check that everything is securely closed and locked on the day you leave for vacation.

10. Install Laminated Security Glass To Vacation Proof Your Home

Reinforcing vulnerable entry points like windows and doors is the best way to physically keep intruders out of your home and prevent a home break-in while you’re on vacation. Standard window glass is incredibly easy to break, which means that burglars can gain entry to your home through an unsecured window or door in just a matter of seconds. Laminated security glass solves this problem by adding an invisible, virtually unbreakable layer of protection on top of your existing glass. 

Laminated security glass panels, such as Riot Glass shields, can be retrofitted onto your home window and door glass and are much more affordable than completely replacing your existing glass. It withstands deliberate attacks by determined individuals using common burglary tools like hammers and crowbars. This makes it one of the most effective ways to protect your home from burglary. Though a security system is recommended, installing laminated security is glass is one of the best ways to secure your home without an alarm while on vacation. 

Keeping Your Home Safe While on Vacation Should Not Be Overlooked

With all the excitement of a holiday, it’s easy to overlook home security while on vacation. However, imagine how devastating it would be to come home after a summer trip, still buzzing from the experiences you had, only to find that criminals have ransacked your home. That’s why it’s imperative to think about how to stop burglars from targeting your home while you’re out of town. You should implement as many of the home security ideas from this list as possible so that you can have total peace of mind on your vacation.

10 Important Facts about Laminated Safety Glass

By | Blog

Security concerns resulting from active shootings in educational centers and places of worship have made most commercial building owners and homeowners to increasingly move away from standard glass windows. There is an increasing need for stronger glass to keep attackers and intruders at bay. Security glass products like laminated safety glass are effective at delaying such forced entries and attacks as well.

With the invention of laminated glass windows, Riot Glass continues to provide security solutions by making windows and doors less penetrable. Before installing or retrofitting their windows and doors, homeowners and commercial building owners need to get some facts about laminated safety glass right. Read on to find out some of those facts.

1. Laminated safety glass consists of layers

Unlike the standard glass for windows and doors, this one is made of two glass layers and an interlayer. The two layers of glass are hardened, mainly through heat strengthening. They are then bonded by the interlayer, which is usually a vinyl material, to keep the two layers intact.

The construction of safety laminated glass is what makes it different from the standard window and door glass. Further, this construction helps prevent forced entry, which makes the glass to be dubbed “safety glass.”

2. Laminated glass does not shatter

When impacted, this safety glass does not shatter and fall off the window or door frame; the vinyl interlayer holds the glass fragments. As such, it does not pose an injury threat to building occupants, which result from flying glass pieces in the case of the standard window and door glass.

Laminated glass is, therefore, effective at blocking the entry of attackers and intruders into homes, stores, or classrooms since it remains in place even after the attempt to shatter it. This feature allows building occupants time to react as well as security officers to arrive.

3. Laminated Glass is not Bulletproof

While some people may mistake laminated glass for bulletproof glass, it is important to note that it falls into the category of non-ballistic glazing products. This means it doesn’t stop a bullet from penetrating, but it will maintain its structure after a bullet impact.

Laminated glass does not, therefore, keep bullets away, but still holds together upon bullet penetration. This is important as it delays the attacker and buys occupants precious time to find cover and authorities to arrive at the place. Unlike the standard glass, it provides a safety barrier against flying pieces of glass that may cause injuries to room occupants.

4. It is virtually invisible

Laminated glass does a great job of keeping you away from intruders and attackers while maintaining crystal clear views of the surroundings. In the design of laminated glass, the interlayer has minimal effect on the view, and building occupants can still enjoy clear views of their surroundings.

The common type of material used as the interlayer makes laminated safety glass panels virtually invisible. This, therefore, makes it useful for schools, homes, and particularly stores, which makes it possible for potential customers to window-shop while maintaining the safety of the valuables inside.

5. 100X stiffer, 5X stronger

Laminated glass is categorized as containment-grade glazing materials, which means it is reinforced with a more robust interlayer. The strength of this safety glass also goes down to the number of glass layers used. It also goes through a hardening process where heat is used to make the glass sturdier.

The thickness of the glass, therefore, comes in handy in determining its protection level. The thickness can vary from 0.60 to 0.90+ mm, depending on the glazing pocket or user preference. The use of stronger interlayer materials, other than the standard polyvinyl butyral (PVB), makes laminated glass stronger and stiffer compared to standard glass and other types of safety glass.

6. Safety glass can be used for new installations or retrofitting

Glass companies have long used laminated glass for windows and doors in new buildings. These may be homes where owners wish to take security measures like preventing forced entry. Jewel store owners also prefer the installation of laminated glass for the door and windows to safeguard their valuables.

This glass can also be retrofitted into almost any existing door and window systems. The existing standard glass is removed and replaced with the laminated glass. It can even be retrofitted into most existing frames, apart from the old and damaged framings.

7. Laminated glass is a great second layer of defense

While typical applications of this glass include door and window systems, it also comes in handy as a second layer of defense. It can be fitted into interior locations like conference rooms, sidelights, and doors.

Laminated glass can also be used for entry doors from a vestibule into the main area of a building. For this application, however, this glass should not be fitted into weak framings or old-school framings like casement frames.

8. Laminated glass is more expensive than standard and tempered glass

It is specially manufactured for bolstering security and preventing forced entry. Laminated safety glass cost is, therefore, higher than other glass types used for door and window systems, including the standard and tempered glass types. Whenever you are planning to install or retrofit your doors and windows with this glass, be ready to dig a little deeper into your pocket.

9. Laminated glass has soundproofing properties

While this may not be the primary reason for the invention and use of laminated glass, it is well worth noting. The vinyl interlayer used in the manufacture of laminated glass can absorb sound up to some level, which helps prevents noise into homes and interior rooms such as conference rooms.

10. Laminated glass provides some level of UV-resistance

This property may not be obvious, mainly because laminated glass does not distort views of the surrounding. Depending on the thickness of the glass and interlayer material, the amount of UV light that penetrates the glass may vary. This way, laminated glass does enough to provide UV-resistance.

Conclusion

Laminated safety glass is an essential containment-grade glazing product that comes in handy in preventing forced entry. When used on doors and window systems for schools, homes, and stores, it does well in delaying forced entry, giving time for room occupants to react, and security officials to arrive.

protect your business from burglary with armorplast

How To Protect Your Business From Burglary – Commercial Burglary Prevention With ArmorPlast

By | Blog

Whether your business is big or small, an unexpected burglary can set you back and hurt your success. On top of the loss of merchandise or vital equipment, there’s also the added expenses of repairing and cleaning up damage caused by the burglars. Not only that, but you also have to factor in the time you waste dealing with the aftermath of the burglary, which is valuable time during which you aren’t doing business.

To prevent catastrophic losses, it’s important to employ a comprehensive strategy to secure and protect your business from burglary. Of course, having a good insurance policy will help you after the event, and things like cameras, security lights, and alarms can deter burglars. However, having all of these systems in place won’t keep a determined individual from breaking in to your business, especially through unsecured windows.

Windows are often the most overlooked areas when it comes to securing your business against break-ins. They are also the most obvious and easiest point of entry for would-be burglars. There are various ways you can secure your windows, such as by applying security films, security screens, or bars, but one of the absolute best and most effective ways to do so is with ArmorPlast products.

What Is ArmorPlast & How Does It Prevent Burglaries?

ArmorPlast is a clear, unbreakable shield that fits over existing glass and acts as a barrier, preventing burglary and active shooter forced entry. ArmorPlast shields are composed of layers of polycarbonate laminate and are available in thicknesses from 0.25 inches to 1.250 inches thick. Each shield in the ArmorPlast product line has a different strength rating that classifies the sheet as non-ballistic, containment grade, or with a specific ballistic rating.

For example, ArmorPlast 25 is ArmorPlast’s entry-level containment grade glazing shield, meaning that it will not stop bullets, but it will resist cracking or shattering. On the other end of the line is ArmorPlast 125MS, which is rated to withstand high-speed, multi-shot ballistic attacks. ArmorPlast products are a top-of-the-line security solution for all types of commercial facilities, including banks, specialty retailers, 24-hour convenience stores, cash transaction windows, schools, government buildings, and religious facilities.

How to Prevent Break-Ins Through Windows with ArmorPlast

Professional burglars know the weak points of your business and can easily identify vulnerable glass that they can force entry through. The only way to fully protect your business against burglary is to secure every possible point of entry. You could do this by installing gates or bars, but those detract from the appearance of your business or are simply not viable in some scenarios.

That’s where ArmorPlast comes to the rescue. All you have to do to prevent break-ins through windows is retrofit your business with ArmorPlast protective sheets. ArmorPlast shields fit right on top of your existing glass and are virtually invisible once installed. The polycarbonate and acrylic laminate composition gives the surface a glass-like hardness, but with much higher impact resistance.

Even the most basic ArmorPlast shield will withstand attempts by burglars to smash your glass with hammers, crowbars, bricks, and other tools commonly used in break-ins and smash-and-grab burglaries. In fact, even if a would-be burglar tried to shoot out a window, the ArmorPlast protective glazing would not break apart or significantly diminish in strength. Burglars won’t even be able to make a hole big enough to pass their hand through to open a door or window on the other side.

Commercial Burglary Prevention – Store Front Security Door Glass Testimonial

riot glass can help to protect your commercial business from burglary

Invisible Window Protection from Burglars

Aside from its unbreakable strength, another huge benefit of using ArmorPlast to protect against business burglary is that it doesn’t change the appearance or structure of your existing glass. ArmorPlast sheets can be mounted right onto your existing window frames or storefront glass framing. The glazing is then locked in place with secure mechanical fasteners, which are covered by low-profile protective caps, so the overall look of your business remains the same.

In addition to being almost invisible, ArmorPlast sheets are highly resistant to yellowing, hazing, and abrasion, so they will last a long time in harsh environments. The proprietary exterior hard coat also resists marring, chemical attacks, and graffiti, and facilitates easy cleaning. You don’t have to worry about sacrificing visibility through your business’s windows.

Protect Your Business from Burglary

Not only does ArmorPlast prevent break-ins through windows, but it also keeps your business safe in the event of civil unrest like rioting and looting. This is especially important if your business is located in an urban core that is more likely to experience protests. Unfortunately, protests can also bring along individuals who are looking to take advantage of the chaos to commit crimes like vandalism and theft.

If you have a street-facing storefront constructed with standard glass, it’s incredibly easy for these types of individuals to throw a rock through a window or smash it with a bat. They can easily gain access to your merchandise, belongings, and equipment before you even know anything happened. Imagine how devastating it would be to arrive early the next morning to open your business only to find that your windows are smashed and your store has been looted.

protect your business from burglary with armorplast

With ArmorPlast, you can rest easy at night, knowing that your business is secured against all forms of break-ins and theft. Even if you’re sitting at home watching the news and you see an angry mob passing down your business’s street, you don’t have to think about rushing down there to check on and protect your business. ArmorPlast products protect your business from burglary and keeps your mind at ease.

ArmorPlast Shields Are the Best Anti-Burglary Defense Mechanism

If you’re concerned about break-ins at your business, you should always employ a full range of security measures. A comprehensive burglary protection strategy includes security cameras, interior and exterior lighting, an alarm system, and safes for high-value items and merchandise. However, the best form of protection against commercial burglary is prevention, and ArmorPlast shields the weakest points of your business against forced entry, making it the best first line of defense against break-ins and burglary.

protecting schools from active shooters

Protecting Schools from Active Shooters

By | Blog

In the first 46 weeks of 2019, there were 45 school shootings at elementary, middle schools, high schools, colleges, and universities. Of those, 32 were at campuses serving Kindergarten through 12th grade, leaving parents, teachers, students, and communities unsure of what steps to take to guarantee the safety and security of students and faculty while attending school. 

As anxiety increases around this sensitive subject, schools are holding active shooter drills, parents are purchasing bulletproof backpacks, and educators are arming themselves. 

But one question remains: How do you keep an active shooter out of your school today? The answer is: hardening your school to keep those meaning to cause harm out. 

 

But what is hardening? 

 

Hardening is a term often used by security professionals, military personnel, and police officers that refers to the process of strengthening a facility’s security to protect occupants in the event of an attack. 

Every building has unprotected entry points that intruders can use to their advantage. The process behind hardening a school is identifying and addressing these physical locations and implementing solutions so that they are not left undefended. 

Two of the most vulnerable points of entry for any building are windows and doors that can be easily broken or kicked in. If these areas contain large amounts of unprotected glass, they are especially at risk.

vulnerable glass is an easy entry point for active shooters

Riot Glass, Your Best Option

 

After years of frustration with the security glass and framing options on the market, the diverse suite of Riot Glass products was born. 

But how is Riot Glass different from tempered or annealed glass? Riot Glass is glass that has been reinforced to provide protection from active-shooters and forced-entry. Once installed, it is nearly indistinguishable from unreinforced glass. 

Riot Glass blocks determined intruders leaving them baffled and unnerved, providing precious time for those inside to react and law enforcement to arrive. The Riot Glass line of highly fortified laminated glass uses a thermoplastic interlayer that is up to 5 times stronger and 100 times stiffer than regular laminated glass. 

While some Riot Glass products are bullet-resistant, other options will not stop live rounds but are intended to maintain their structural integrity, continuing to keep intruders out even when riddled with bullets. 

 

When an Intruder Breaks in

 

When doors and windows are locked, those inside may feel a false sense of security. While installing products such as deadbolts, alarms, and cameras can help, often ignoring windows and glass doors is a fatal flaw in many active shooter protection strategies. 

When we want to enter a building, our brains are programmed to look for a door. The same thinking can be applied to an armed intruder seeking access to a building. If they find the door locked, it usually creates a sense of urgency, causing them to immediately seek the closet point of entry. 

If the door is partly or completely comprised of glass or has a nearby window, it becomes extremely likely the intruder will simply break or shoot the glass to make their way inside of the building instead of searching for an alternate entry point. 

Once inside, it can take a matter of minutes for damage to be done and lives to be lost. Upon the realization that an active shooter has penetrated a school, panic can set in causing symptoms such as shortness of breath, trembling, dizziness, or even an out of body experience. 

ordinary glass offers little protection from active shooters

 

Those panicking may be unsure of what to do to protect themselves and need assistance. Active shooters count on the element of surprise.  As a result, every second matters. Time is needed to focus and plan effective action. Quick decisions must be made to either exit the premises or barricade yourself in a room. 

What studies have learned is that deterring or slowing an intruder is the key to increasing the chance of survival. 

 

Conclusion

 

Keeping an active shooter out of your school is directly related to saving lives. An FBI study between 2000 and 2013 determined 64% of active shooter events are over within 5 minutes. 

Typical police response times for an active shooter situation is 6 -10 minutes, which is not an effective option when lives are at stake. What we have learned from the events of the past is that time is of the essence. 

We must empower our staff and students by giving them the tools to protect themselves. 

Riot Glass has created viable solutions for anti-intrusion and ballistic resistance that won’t break your budget. A recent independent laboratory test of our ArmorPlast 25, which is the thinnest and most affordable of its product line, ended after 8 minutes of the lab tech using everything from a sledgehammer to bullets without gaining entry. 

Our products work when it matters most, creating a physical barrier between those that mean to cause harm and those that need protection.

Active Shooter Mitigation Glass | 800-580-2303

New Technology Stops Forced Entry Crimes

By | Blog

After 30 years in the glass protection business, I’ve seen some very inventive techniques on surveillance videos.

Security Glass to Prevent Forced Entry | 800-580-2303

Searching the internet for CCTV footage of forced entry crimes, including burglaries, robberies, and active shooter events, has become a regular part of my week. Police will often upload videos showing these crimes in an effort to get information from anyone that may have knowledge to help them in catching the criminals. In the thousands of hours of video I’ve watched, one thing is certain; bad actors will continue to evolve as we continue to bolster our defenses. We are in a war of wills. Our desire to keep them out versus their desire to get in.

To get insights into the magnitude of this challenge, one need only reflect on cybercrime as an example. We are well-aware of the need to update our malware and anti-virus constantly to thwart an ever-evolving effort on the part of hackers, yet in the physical world we rely on the same security products we have been using for decades. The “jig is up”. Bad guys know how to get past locked doors and are no longer deterred by security cameras or alarm systems. They’re still successfully forcing their way in.

Lets look at some existing security measures, that alone are no longer “cutting the mustard”. These need to be paired with other technology to create a more robust system for preventing forced entry crimes.

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Security cameras are an excellent tool for documenting events as they unfold, which helps investigators solve crimes. Using facial, vehicle, and even behavioral recognition, new software can detect an individual who has been banned from a property, and even the vehicle they are known to drive, as well as aggressive behavior. With the proliferation of cameras into security systems and public places in general, these technological advents certainly make security cameras more useful as an early warning system for certain types of crimes, but cameras are not a barrier to entry and will not stop a crime from occurring in most cases.

Riot Glass Security Glass Augments Security | 800-580-9997

Alarm systems are necessary for alerting police, and a loud alarm sound is undoubtedly going to scare off a percent of would-be intruders, but it takes considerable time for the alarm company to make initial calls to the property owner before a call to the police occurs. This wastes valuable time. Criminals use the statistical data in their favor, betting on the response time taking longer than they need to commit the crime and get away.

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Police response times vary greatly, and according to an FBI report*, 60% of active shooter crimes end before police arrive. In a burglary the time delays can be even longer. Once police are alerted, it can take several minutes to over an hour for them to arrive, depending on the proximity of officers to the alarm and amount of other police activity taking place at the same time. False alarms are common, so police may not place a priority on responding, and bad actors use these timelines to their advantage. They know statistically they have a good chance of committing a crime and escaping before police arrive.

* https://www.fbi.gov/file-repository/as-study-quick-reference-guide-updated1.pdf/view

Security Glass to protect your facility from an armed intruder | Riot Glass | 800-580-2303

Windows and glass doors are the Achilles heel of a building, and this is where intruders are getting in. Traditional security window films and laminated glass are no match for the heavier tools bad actors have learned to bring along as part of their tool arsenal. Entry takes only seconds when it used to take minutes or deter crimes all together. Not anymore. Apparently, sledgehammers are standard issue when graduating bad guy academy these days, so we need to prepare with a more robust system. New retrofit panels from Riot Glass for example, have been shown to prevent forced entry attempts, even when sledgehammers are used (see video below). This innovative system uses an unbreakable, containment-grade polycarbonate panel in conjunction with a patented framing system to create a shield that makes forced entry through the glass virtually impossible. This is the same type of system used in correctional facilities and psychiatric hospitals. When you absolutely, positively must keep someone out, this is the system you use. It is far lighter weight than heavy ballistic security glass, so no other modifications are needed. It simply bolts onto virtually any door or window frame. This system comes in bronze or clear aluminum anodize. It can also be powder coated to any custom color. All fasteners are then hidden under a decorative cover, so the system blends seamlessly into the window or door frame for a virtually invisible appearance.

All of these security measures together create a layered system that will likely delay if not completely deter a bad actor, buying precious time and thus saving lives and protecting property. It is time for the civilized modern world to take a stand against forced entry crimes. Don’t let your facility, school, or home get behind and become an attractive target. Start implementing one technology at a time. Barriers to entry are the best place to start. If the balloon goes up, you’ll be glad you did.

Riot Glass Security for ACTIVE SHOOTER PROTECTION

Protecting Facilities from Active Shooter Attacks

By | Blog

The importance of keeping an armed intruder out of a building cannot be underestimated. Once inside, the situation goes from bad to infinitely worse. Building occupants need sufficient time to gather their wits, spring into action, and switch on the run, hide, fight mindset.

Dexterity and decision-making can be significantly diminished in the panic following the realization that an actual attack is taking place. As a result, every second matters. Time is needed to get focused and take meaningful action, to exit or barricade in a room, and to calm anyone else who may be panicked and unsure of what to do. Deterring or slowing an intruder is the key to increasing the chances for survival.

If a school or facility has access controls and all doors remained locked, occupants may feel a false sense of security. Locked doors, alarms, and cameras are important, but ignoring windows and glass doors is a fatal flaw in many active shooter protection strategies.

Riot Glass Security for ACTIVE SHOOTER PROTECTION

The problem:

There are many misconceptions surrounding fenestration security. Chief among them are the options an armed intruder has when endeavoring to enter a building. Most attackers go to a door and attempt to open it. If the door is locked they may immediately feel a sense of urgency as the adrenaline dumps into their bloodstream. Searching the building perimeter for an unlocked door will seem time-consuming, so finding a quicker way to enter in the immediate vicinity will likely be the next action. If the door has vision glass, or if there is a window adjacent to the door, breaking the glass to gain entry is a tactic an intruder will likely use.

Fire egress panic hardware is mandated in common areas for safety. An occupant need only crash into the door to trigger the panic hardware, allowing the door to fly open. While this is ideal for fire safety, it is a vulnerability when it comes to security. An attacker can simply break the glass, reach in, and pull the panic hardware to gain entry. This can be done more quickly than using a key to unlock a door and renders access controls useless.

Glass doors and windows in entrances of buildings must be tempered for safety. Tempering is a process where glass is heated and then rapidly cooled to create internal compression. By design, when the glass breaks, it shatters into millions of tiny pieces, preventing any large shards of glass. The result is a safer window, but a substantially higher security risk. An attacker need only strike or shoot the glass for it to burst and immediately fall into a pile of gravel which can be simply stepped over to gain entry.

Retrofit existing glass doors with ArmorPlast | 800-580-2303

Commonly deployed products:

Security window film is often used to slow or prevent entry, but on tempered glass it must be attached at the edges to prevent the whole broken piece from being dislodged. Often, especially on doors, the attachment options are limited and can readily fail. Even if the attachment does not fail, the film itself can be “punched through” with a tool such as a hammer, metal bar, or even the butt of a gun. Window film may slow an attacker, but if he is prepared, the delay is often only a few seconds. He need only punch a hole large enough to insert his hand and pull the panic bar or access the thumb turn on the lock cylinder. Window film, however, is a viable solution for non-entry areas, especially when the glass is annealed.

Laminated glass is another common method used to secure glass vulnerabilities. This technology is essentially two pieces of glass with a window film-type interlayer sandwiched in between, offering similar protection to that of window films. The vulnerability of puncture remains and can be thwarted in seconds if the attacker is prepared with an object to strike the glass.

Bulletproof glass is another way facilities protect entrances, but there is a significant cost barrier for many, as these materials are far more expensive than the other options. Additionally, the sheer weight of these materials is such that a simple retrofit is not always possible. It may involve removing the existing doors and windows and adding in new framing, and/or changing the hinges and door closers to accommodate the extra weight. This may be the ideal solution from a protection standpoint, but is cost prohibitive more often than not.

Riot Glass Security for ACTIVE SHOOTER PROTECTION

Most viable solution:

Riot Glass, Inc saw a clear gap between the lower-level and the high-end protection options, and developed a shielding product called ArmorPlast (AP25). This system includes an unbreakable, containment-grade panel and a retrofit framing that is attached to the outside surface of a door or window frame. It becomes a shield that protects the glass and prevents access. Although AP25 does not stop bullets, it does not crack or shatter. Even after being riddled with bullets, it remains a barrier to entry because it cannot be dislodged and a would-be intruder’s hand cannot pass through to open the door. AP25 is lightweight and can be retrofitted onto most glass doors. It can also be mounted in front of the windows adjacent the doors for added (and highly recommended) protection.

Conclusion:

Police response times vary greatly, but range on average from 3-5 minutes. We often see that a lot of damage can be done within that time frame, so slowing or preventing entry is crucial. When a would-be intruder is kept outside, they are likely to panic and abandon the attack altogether. The longer the delay, the more likely they will be deterred. Police can locate and neutralize the threat far more easily if an intruder is still outside when they arrive.

We set out to create a protection system that is affordable, superior in strength, light weight, and easy to install. ArmorPlast 25 is the product that fills the gap between low-cost weaker solutions, and higher priced ballistic solutions. ArmorPlast was designed to protect students and faculty, employees of businesses, persons of prominent notoriety, and anyone who may otherwise fall victim to the horrific crimes that motivated its inception.

For more information call 800-580-2303, or fill out the form below.

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