VistaScape Surveillance Software Watches Over Corps of Engineers Waterway

By Consulting Specifying Engineer Staff May 3, 2006

VistaScape Security Systems announced last week that its automated wide-area surveillance software has been implemented to protect U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) dam facilities and assets along the Savannah River near Clemson, S.C.

USACE adopted the technology to address and counteract potential threats to the facility, including terrorism, trespassing, theft and vandalism. Remote Technologies of Savannah, Ga. is the security integrator for the project.

VistaScape SiteIQ provides a graphical bird’s eye view of the property, which covers approximately 50 sq. miles. Using VistaScape’s patented technology, the software detects, tracks and classifies objects in real time on the screen. If an object violates a policy set by USACE, the software streams live video of the alarm event to the display and can also send wireless alerts to law enforcement personnel.

“Few organizations understand how to manage and protect critical infrastructure like the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers,” said P.J. Lynch, President and COO of VistaScape. “Their experience has resulted in a case study of how intelligent video technologies can be used as a force multiplier to proactively protect large, remote sites in heterogeneous terrains.”

Before the security upgrade, USACE performed a rigorous review of security at the facility, based on The Risk Assessment Methodology for Dams (RAM-D). Developed by Sandia National Laboratories and adapted from processes used to safeguard nuclear materials, RAM-D identifies effective means of countering the potential threat to the security of the U.S.’s more than 75,000 dams.

USACE evaluated a number of approaches and competing technologies for the project. In addition to its cost benefits compared with fencing the entire area, SiteIQ is a non-obtrusive solution that allows public access to recreation areas. The software streams video only on demand or on a policy exception, such as if a person or object attempts to enter a restricted area. SiteIQ also provides a platform for future growth at the facility, with the ability to incorporate access control, smart fences and other sensor technologies.

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