Saving with legacy alarm integration

Issue 4 2022 Perimeter Security, Alarms & Intruder Detection

Virgin Active operates 136 health clubs across South Africa, Botswana and Namibia and is passionate about helping people of all ages live an active lifestyle. With thousands of people accessing their facilities daily from the early hours of the morning until late in the evening, security is a priority.

Due to the nature of each location, with multiple rooms spread across large areas and often multiple storeys, wireless security technology is the ideal solution to ensure comprehensive and uninterrupted communication of alarm system alerts. Service provider Fidelity ADT was requested to source a solution that would cope with the wireless demands, in seamless collaboration with the retention of some of the existing wired security technology.

“The biggest challenge on site was the limited range of the existing security equipment. In addition, the facilities are not opened and closed by the same person on a daily basis, so a system that could accommodate this variable was required. We have worked closely with Fidelity ADT in the past and our Ajax product line-up is perfectly suited to the requirements of Virgin Active,” says Ingo Mutinelli, head of sales, Southern Africa for Ajax Systems.

Elvey was contracted to provide the Ajax HUB 2 Plus control panels, two Ajax MotionProtect indoor motion cameras and the Ajax MultiTransmitter installed by Fidelity ADT at each of the Virgin Active gym sites.

“The MultiTransmitter is a module for connecting wired third-party devices to an Ajax Hub and in this case is used for managing security via the ADT Connect Ajax app. It is especially advantageous as it allows you to bring third-party wired products into the Ajax ecosystem. This means that Virgin Active is able to retain some of their legacy equipment, which results in a substantial cost saving for them,” says Mutinelli.

Ajax MotionCam simultaneously uses two specialised radio protocols: Jeweller for sending instantaneous alarms and Wings for rapid image delivery. Users will receive the first snapshot of the event within nine seconds after motion is detected. As usual, the alarm notification will arrive in a split second, even if the signal is unstable.

Mutinelli explains that when power failures occur at the gyms, the GSM network in the area goes offline when the cellular towers are left without power. This results in unacceptable breaks in communication between the gym security system and the Fidelity ADT control room. “The Ajax Hub 2 Plus control panels fill this gap by allowing for redundancy using Wi-Fi, Ethernet or VHF communication. The end result is reliable transmission and communication to the control room. In addition, the ADT Connect Ajax app on the user’s phone provides powerful management facilities, such as the ability to arm or disarm the alarm system via one’s mobile phone. To date the Ajax systems have been installed at a Virgin Active gym in Johannesburg and another one in Cape Town, with more installations to follow.”


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