Consider these Security Measures at your Facility

Updated: Mar 29, 2019

Use signs, vegetation, fencing, and pathways to clearly define property lines.


Trim the shrubs, trees, and relocate obstacles such as trash containers to eliminate hiding places, and provide clear lines of sight throughout the facility grounds.


Keep trees well trimmed if they are located near building exits, access roads, and utility wires so they do not block site access, building entry and egress in emergency. Also ensure that they do not block areas to be monitored by cameras.


Prevent access to windows and roof tops by trimming trees, relocating objects near the building that could be used for climbing. Ensure that downspouts, covered walkway supports, light posts and other building or site features are not scalable.


Secure roof hatches and doors, operable skylights, and access panels.


Ensure that fire hydrants on or near facility grounds are visible and unobstructed.


Keep facility grounds and buildings policed, and make immediate repairs to damage inside and outside the building. Do not let graffiti or tagging sit for longer than 10 days.


Routinely inspect exterior lighting for damage and bulb replacement, and make immediate repairs.


Fence off or otherwise enclose niches and blind spots in exterior walls that provide hiding places. Add motion activated lighting to areas that cannot easily be seen from direct line of sight outdoors. The activation of the light will help deter and draw attention.



Clearly mark and separate visitor parking. Secure staff parking areas.


Keep bus and car access separated from facility buildings and play areas by using curbs, removable bollards, and gates that allow emergency vehicles access but keep out other vehicles.


Place traffic calming devices, stop signs, pavement markings, speed bumps, in your parking lots and driveways.


Ensure external entrances and exits on your building have a distinctive and easy to recognize numbering system to help emergency responders, staff, and visitors to quickly located particular points or find their way.


Clearly mark the main entry to the facility and post signs on other entries redirecting visitors to the main entry.


Ensure that the fresh air intakes for the building's mechanical systems are screened and located at least 12 feet off the ground and are otherwise inaccessible.


Limit the use of building entrances to one, or as few is as possible.


Routinely inspect exterior doors for damage and faulty hardware, and make immediate repairs.


Install fish-eye viewers in exterior doors lacking windows or side re-lights to help identify those seeking entry.


Institute strict procedures for key controls and access.


Ensure that internal access points between organizations and sections of joint-use facilities are limited and secure.


Where appropriate, number or renumber doors and rooms in a logical sequence, floor by floor pattern so that emergency responders can locate them quickly.


Consider displaying room numbers on classroom windows so they are readily visible to first responders from outside the building.


Routinely inspect all windows accessible from the street for damage and faulty hardware, and make immediate repairs.


Ensure that all windows meant to provide a secondary means of escape are in working order and are not blocked by screens, security grills, louvers, awnings, or other devices. Ensure that if the window is hard for smaller individuals to get through, there is a means to both get up and over, and a way down on the other side, such as a bagged emergency ladder.


Consider installing motion detectors inside the building that trigger intrusion alarms and alert police. Make sure such alarms automatically arm during the hours when no one should be in the building.


Keep unoccupied rooms and spaces locked when not in use. This practice requires full cooperation of staff.


Consider keeping door latches in the locked position in occupied work spaces, classrooms and other areas so that in the event of a lock-down, individuals can simply close the door.


For safe rooms; Consider installing a single cylinder deadbolt that has a thumb-turn lock control on one side, that can be flipped into the lock position easily from the inside, with the bolt placed high enough on the door that small children can't easily set the lock.


Keep egress paths, corridors, stairs, stairwells, and other exits clear of obstructions and flammable materials.


In schools, ensure that no more than twenty percent of wall space in a classroom or hallway is covered with teaching materials or artwork for fire safety reasons.


Ensure that corridor and restroom lighting controls are protected from unauthorized use or tampering.


Ensure that all spaces in the facility have two functioning exits.


Routinely check that exit signs are visible and illuminated when power goes out.


Routinely check that fire alarms, fire extinguishers, and other fire safety components are in good working order, and that staff is trained in the use of fire extinguishers.


Post clear and precise emergency evacuation maps in building spaces and at key corridor locations. Be sure to color code them for clarity.


Ensure that all offices, work spaces, and classrooms have two way communication with a central location.


Install a panic or duress alarm at the reception desk and within the main office area to alert key staff.


Use caller ID on all phones to help identify and deter threatening callers. Consider blocking all numbers that are masked or that are using a technology to dynamically obfuscate their caller ID.


Ensure that medicines, and non-emergency related medical supplies are locked in an observable part of the office.


Ensure that designated areas of refuge have appropriate window and door protections.


If the building's ventilation system has a master control, provide a shut-off switch in an identified location.


Ensure Radio Frequency communication is possible throughout your facility.


Install a battery or portable generator backup power supply for telephones and emergency communications. Ensure that it has enough capability to keep those systems alive for several days.


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