SUBSTATION SECURITY BASIC INFORMATION AND TUTORIALS



The preparation of a security plan shall require answering the following:
a) Why is the plan needed?
b) Who will administer the plan?
c) What security measures are required by the individual facility?

These questions need to be addressed before a comprehensive and cost-effective security plan can be created.

Objective of the security plan
For any plan to be successful, it must have a clearly stated objective. Using historical operating data, demographics information, and industry experience, each company can determine the level and type of security required.

Defining the objective will help focus attention on those security methods most appropriate to the company’s needs. The objective should state the present and primary concerns, such as vandalism and theft in existing stations, or theft and injury during substation construction.

Responsibility for security
Identification of the person or persons responsible for security implementation and administration is critical to the effectiveness of the plan. Therefore, defined levels of responsibility and specific tasks are required for each level.

Each company should have someone in charge of facilities security. This individual should be responsible for assuring that a security plan is developed, implemented, regularly reviewed, and updated.

Regular inspection of facilities to assure that security measures are in effect should be part of the security plan, along with employee training and methods that enable employees to report irregularities or breaches of security.

Basic security requirements
All existing and new substations have a basic minimum level of security required. This includes fences with locked gates, control buildings with locked doors, a special type of grounding system if copper theft is prevalent, and minimum clearance distances between perimeter fences and energized equipment.

Basic security requirements should list these measures as required in all cases, regardless of location or age of the station. In addition, some types of security breach may require special or immediate action by operations staff.

For example, damage to the ground system of an energized station should be treated with care in case of the unlikely event of a dangerous touch potential. These types of security breaches should be noted in the security plan.

At construction and material storage sites, or vacant land, minimum security levels may either not exist, or may be inadequately described. Therefore, it is important to define the security measures required by type of facility or site, especially if the measures required are different from other basic measures normally required.

For instance, vacant land should be inspected on a regular basis for evidence of use for illicit activities, unauthorized dumping, and existence of holes that could cause injury due to falls. Security methods at active construction sites can include moving all construction equipment inside of fenced areas at night and checkin/ check-out of personnel through a security gate.

Additional security measures
Additional security measures, over and above the basic requirements, may be determined to be necessary based on the security survey results. The increased security measures required should be based on restricted access or high-risk areas. The types of security used in these instances could include motion detectors, perimeter/area detection systems, security cameras, jersey barriers, and posted guards.

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