Transnet improves overall security management

September 2008 Asset Management, Transport (Industry)

Transnet Freight Rail is deploying a multimillion dollar Orsus Situator installation for its Passenger and Freight Rail divisions.

Orsus, a specialist in the field of situation management, a new holistic approach to optimising situation planning, response and analysis, is in the process of deploying its Situator product suite at Transnet Freight Rail, one of the largest international rail operators based in South Africa focusing on carrying freight, containers and passengers throughout the country.

The project, now underway, is connecting three nerve centres in Johannesburg, Richards Bay and Cape Town, with thousands of surveillance cameras, digital video recorders, access control systems, fire systems, and electrical fence sensors deployed across 34 000 kilometres of rails at more than 1000 remote sites. Transnet sites include terminals, depots, office buildings and other remote facilities throughout South Africa. The project is being implemented by two South African-based systems integrators.

"This project is part of a major undertaking by Transnet to implement an enterprise-level security and safety system that protects our passengers, rail systems, facilities and employees," said Kay Nayager, security technology manager, Transnet Freight Rail. "Orsus and its Situator solution is a critical component of this project, enabling Transnet to effectively manage all security systems and provide the best response possible to emergency situations."

An additional aspect of the project involves integrating Situator with a Barco video wall system. Transnet's national nerve centre in Johannesburg features a 19 metre Barco video wall system, while Richards Bay and Cape Town each have a 7 metre system. Each section of the video wall displays a video matrix of a sector in the region that is under the responsibility of a specific operator. Additional information, representing a sector's situation awareness map and incident response procedures, are displayed when a sector is in emergency operation. In addition, it is also possible to call up Barco pre-defined layouts automatically or on-demand directly from Situator. These layouts represent pre-defined scene setups that correspond to various emergency and routine situations.

"High-risk facilities and transportation organisations demand the most forward-thinking security solutions and early on Transnet Freight Rail recognised the importance of having a situation management platform to address the unique manner they were planning to manage the workflow of their security organisation," said Gilad Chitayat, director of sales at Orsus.

Situator is a security and safety Situation Management software for integrated control rooms. It creates an environment where all current and future technologies, people and actionable tasks are fused into a unified environment performing as if it were a single coordinated entity. Situator leverages existing security investments and empowers the security personnel to manage the overload of information in control rooms by focusing the appropriate individuals on the precise data they require to manage the situation. With its advanced, yet easy-to-use planning tools, Situator helps transform routine and emergency plans into actionable, adaptive tasks and procedures and integrates them with virtually any security and safety devices, management systems, dynamic data sources and communication systems.

With Orsus' Situator, Transnet Freight Rail can integrate incident reporting, simulate security related events for training purposes and deploy system analysis tools to provide a comprehensive security approach. It enables Transnet Freight Rail to also improve risk management and minimise vulnerability. Situator reduces potentially costly human error, makes it easy to establish and maintain compliance with industry and government regulations and dramatically improves the speed and effectiveness of incident response and recovery while actually reducing operating costs.

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