West Hollywood is the heart of action in Los Angeles County. From the iconic Sunset Strip to the famous Santa Monica Boulevard and the Design District, its high-energy and diverse culture is apparent throughout. The trendy hosts more than 1.2 million visitors a year in addition to the city’s 38,000 residents. That amount of traffic means that protecting this on-the-go town presents unique challenges.
Over the years city officials realized that historic and city buildings as well as numerous city-owned public spaces throughout West Hollywood offered only obsolete emergency systems. But the need for an effective emergency alert system was pushed to the forefront after a minor altercation occurred at City Hall.
“Many of the city’s existing emergency systems were part of original building construction,” explained Beth Remmelsberger, Regional Sales & Marketing Executive – California & Arizona for Enterprise Security, Inc., who had been providing security solutions to West Hollywood for five years. “Many had inaccessible, hardwired emergency buttons. Some of the buttons didn’t work and none were close to staff to activate.”
Initially, the city considered a rapid response system for City Hall alone, according to Remmelsberger, but officials quickly realized they needed a single reliable system to protect all city properties. They specifically needed a solution that could immediately alert Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, who protect the area, in case of an emergency.
A new duress solution had to protect eight key locations throughout the city. Officials wanted panic buttons conveniently located for personnel. In addition, the city wanted the ability to alert key personnel of emergency situations at the same time law enforcement was contacted. This would hopefully allow individuals to take any necessary protective action until help arrived.
“The city had very specific requirements as to what they needed the system to do and once they knew Response Technologies could fulfill all of those requirements, they were sold,” said Remmelsberger.
The Solution: Centurion Elite® with Centurion® Gateway
An initial meeting brought together city officials and representatives from Enterprise Security, Response Technologies and local law enforcement. “All of these different groups working together led to a great success story,” explained Remmelsberger. “Partnering together, we were able to build this amazing solution for eight city buildings around the city with multiple panic buttons.”
“Enterprise Security was already a reliable provider that the city relied upon for guidance,” said Brent Jones, Director of Channel Sales at Response Technologies, Ltd. “Officials trusted Enterprise Security — and Enterprise trusted Response Technologies — to take the city’s security to the next level.”
“We were able to add extra value to what they had and bring a full solution,” said Remmelsberger. The solution included installing a single Centurion Elite® in City Hall with seven connected Centurion® Gateway sensors. This enabled a single duress system to protect all eight government-managed locations.
“The Centurion Elite is recognized as the world’s most advanced emergency notification solution. It can instantly notify first responders and use a variety of wireless and network-driven sensors to meet varied facility needs,” explained Jones.
With Centurion Elite and Centurion Gateway duress buttons were able to be placed at significant distances with no restrictions on the number of locations. For West Hollywood these locations included City Hall, the historic Werle Building, administrative buildings, the library, a parking structure and the city’s pool.
With Response Technologies’ Elite Audience®, officials were able to determine who received emergency notifications at the same time as the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, depending on the time, day and level of emergency. “The system can be customized, and different groups can be notified, depending on the type of emergency,” said Remmelsberger. With the help of Response Technologies’ PCAlert®, notifications immediately pop on specific staff computer monitors when the alarm is activated.
“Communication is key in response systems today,” said Jones. “PCDuress® can be installed across a network and can leverage the already established infrastructure for city-wide — or enterprise-level — deployment.”
When connected to the city’s network, Centurion Gateway acts as a router, receiving any alarm or notification and forwarding it across the LAN to the Centurion Elite, according to Jones. With Centurion Elite and Centurion Gateway’s modular flexibility and expandable design, the city can also change or expand their solution as city needs change. “Staff members are able to go about their workdays with the confidence of an instant connection to assistance if a need should arise,” he added.
Security with Confidence
Unexpected violence and emergencies can occur anywhere or at any time. Now, residents and visitors to West Hollywood can pursue sightseeing, shopping and nightlife while city officials have the confidence and freedom of knowing staff members and the public have instant connection to help, should the need arise.
“We feel good that West Hollywood has this system in place,” said Remmelsberger. “Making sure the city has exactly what they need and providing peace of mind is a great feeling.“