Camera for inset exterior school door

Discussion in 'Chit-Chat' started by crashdox, Jun 15, 2018.

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  1. crashdox

    crashdox n3wb

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    Hi, i'm newbie to this forum. As the volunteer tech guy for our small parochial school, I get to do the 'fun' stuff. Due to all of the news this year ala schools, we need to add some cameras to some outside doors. The problem is, most of the doors are inset (see pic). Talking to the school principal, the solution desired is for the personnel in the office to see someone is AT the door at a glance; the approach, not nearly as important. So, I'm looking for something that can go close to the door itself, looking down/out, to see who is there. I'm not averse to a doorbell 'type' camera, so long as it's always on & streaming like a regular camera. I've been looking at Vivotek & Dahua so far, still have to look at Hikvision.

    Night vision NOT important, but OK to have. Definitely want to go IP & PoE. Hardwired, no wifi.

    The depth of the outside wall to the inner brick border is 24 inches. The depth to the door is 33 inches. Height is 7 feet. Looking THROUGH the tiny windows in the door is not an option.

    Thoughts? Ideas? Feasible?

    Thanks!
     

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  2. tangent

    tangent Known around here

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    If you want a camera to see anything when a door is open / propped open your options are pretty limited. There's a small area above the doors that's out of the door swing. Personally I think seeing the approach to the door would be useful. It looks like there might be a bit of a vestibule / another set of doors before you go too far. I'd put a camera in this area too.

    My first thought was actually more on the value of an access control system. The ability to lock / unlock / close a number of exterior and interior doors can be very useful. This often includes request to exit type motion sensors inside near the doors. Electromagnet door stops allow you to remotely close doors (these were common at schools long before school shooting were common (tied to fire alarm and a timer)).
     
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  3. TonyR

    TonyR Known around here

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    +1^^ to that from me.
    Also, as one forum member said in another post recently (to paraphrase).." do you want to know what happened or would you prefer to be able to prevent it?"

    If you are concerned based on recent unfortunate school shootings, I'd consider not only the camera methods as suggested by @tangent but possibly even the push-button to call at a locked door: a staff member (office always staffed by at least one person) answers via 2-way intercom and is looking at the person's FACE that pushed the call button; that same staff member can then push a button to activate a solenoid to unlock the door (the audible buzz).

    Those systems have been around for eons, I'd supplement it with the cam(s) as suggested by @tangent .
     
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  4. tangent

    tangent Known around here

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    Access control can take many different forms for budgets of all sizes. I suggested something on the order of a simple push button to remotely unlock a door to somebody at a church, who I mistakenly thought could handle it :facepalm:. Oh my... One simple thing to note, some electronic strikes can operate on DC or AC but only make significant audible noise when using AC.

    If the school is associated with a church, see what kind of resources (people) you have in the congregation who are experienced with cctv, alarms, and access control.
     
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  5. tangent

    tangent Known around here

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    A good access control system can lock and unlock remotely, follow a schedule, and use secure keyfobs. It can also tell you if a door is open, closed, propped open, or forced open. Schools have long been targets of vandalism and many have had alarm systems for a long time, it might be easier than you think to make some big upgrades in this department.

    The biggest mistakes happen and most money is wasted when people rush into implementing stuff like this in response to an incident of some type. Be slow, careful, and methodical. Get estimates from some companies, even if you don't use them learn from and listen to what they say.
     
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  6. crashdox

    crashdox n3wb

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    Thanks for the replies; yes, i'm the one that does access control as well. I like the idea of the button call with camera; we have that on the front door already (dome camera inside, call box outside); an integrated one would be required here. The areas we are looking at now ARE capable of 'air-lock' setup, with the inside doors on a mag lock (not yet in place.) Note, the outside door is an automatic lock, only crashbars inside to open.