06 Sep Oil Refineries Perimeter Security
Large facilities are highly complex in terms of their invulnerability. As it has a large surface area, the number of accesses to the enclosure is greater, and its surveillance becomes more complicated than in other classes of buildings. This is the case of petrochemical complexes and, therefore, it is necessary to have perimeter security systems in oil refineries that are equipped with the maximum technology to prevent strangers from entering them.
What is meant by perimeter security?
The perimeter security of an enclosure is the set of electronic and mechanical equipment and systems whose purpose is the following:
- Protect and monitor the exterior perimeter of an installation.
- Be a deterrent and preventive measure against possible intruders who want to access.
- Stop and notify any intrusion attempt or unauthorized access.
All this implies that a perimeter security system in a refinery, or in any type of installation, can be considered as the first line of defense, becoming a very effective method to protect property.
Today, perimeter protection is necessary to protect industrial estates, housing developments, critical facilities and large industrial areas such as hydroelectric plants, extraction plants or refineries. A good security plan is key, since it allows to activate alarms even before an intrusion can occur, and thus avoid theft and unauthorized access to this type of facilities.
A good system must not only be based on everything said above, it must be effective and, at the same time, it must have a low probability of generating false alarms. But, for this to occur, industrial security systems for large surfaces must have the following characteristics:
- Adapt to the geometry and morphology of the terrain.
- That can work with adverse weather conditions.
- That there is a way to transmit signals.
- That it is reliable in its operation.
- That minimizes false alarms that may occur.
What types of perimeter protection are there?
Unfortunately, there is no fixed pattern when it comes to establishing the best protection system. Each venue is different, what may be valid for one, it is possible that in another it remains insufficient. This means that for an effective implementation, experts in the field who know the different types of systems on the market are necessary to achieve efficient security. For this, an assessment of the different risk factors that may be generated and the use of solutions to counteract them is necessary.
The different types of perimeter security must be chosen based on several criteria, since the different existing systems can be classified as follows:
- According to the support system they have: They are divided into buried, visual detection, supported or self-supported.
- According to the geometry of the surface to be protected: They can be superficial, linear or volumetric.
- According to their principle of action: There are microphonic cables, electrified fences, pressure cables, radio frequency or fiber optics.
- According to their means of detection: These are divided according to their dependence on the environment. They can be open (infrared, microwave or video surveillance barriers), while the closed ones are made up of fiber optics, microphone cables and piezoelectric sensors.
- According to its location in the enclosure: In explosive environments it is necessary to install ATEX equipment that guarantees its operation in explosive atmospheres.
Different solutions to control the perimeter security system in refineries
There are numerous solutions on the market to efficiently control security in this type of facility. The main thing is to avoid intrusion, since it can cause certain types of crimes. But also, it may be necessary to control other parts of the enclosure to reinforce its protection, as a form of additional protection.
So far we have looked at the features and different types of perimeter security, but what solutions do we have for refineries? To intelligently, effectively and completely protect these enclosures, any of these solutions can be used:
- Physical protection: It is the set of elements formed by solutions such as security fences, armored or armored doors or different forms of maritime security systems.
- Perimeter protection: It is the set of techniques aimed at controlling unauthorized access to the facilities. The most common are radars, sensors or those based on video surveillance.
- Wireless or electronic locks: In charge of blocking and unlocking any type of access such as doors or barriers, both interior and perimeter.
Video security as one of the most used solutions in perimeter security at refineries
Video security consists of closed television circuits distributed in all points of the perimeter, and is one of the most common systems used in perimeter security in refineries.
Through the exterior cameras distributed around the entire contour of the facilities, an intelligent video analysis is carried out, recording everything on a device capable of this. Meanwhile, it is necessary that all this content be monitored, either in person or remotely, by people specialized in the matter. It is the best way to anticipate intruders.
For this, different types of cameras can be used, such as visible (IP or analog), thermal, conventional, domes or PTZ, among others. They are capable of operating under any conditions and allow to obtain great results in terms of safety.
For this system to be effective, it is necessary to study the entire perimeter so that there is full coverage and there are no blind spots. For this, specialists such as those from Microsegur can technically study their location avoiding dead zones such as those produced by uneven ground or those located below each camera. And all this with a design that optimizes the number of units to install.
The importance of a design that covers 100% of the perimeter of the refinery is crucial to avoid failures in its safety, hence the need for it to be a group of engineers and technicians who are experts in the field for its design and installation.
In conclusion, perimeter security in refineries is essential to protect these high-value facilities from intrusions that can lead to theft or sabotage. And for this, the indicated thing is to put yourself in the hands of professionals such as Microsegur, who will carry out the studies that are necessary to implement and choose the best protection measures.