Video Management Software Improves Safety at Metropolitan Multi-Service Center

The center’s staff can be alerted in real time if an incident occurs without waiting for an incident report to be filed.

By HFT Staff
December 2, 2022

Houston’s Metropolitan Multi-Service Center (MMSC)is an anchor site for government and non-profit programs and services for people with disabilities. The city installed the center's first IP video management system, making safety and security a top priority for patrons with disabilities and the center’s staff. 

The center’s Adaptive Sports and Recreation Park traditionally relied on staff to physically conduct security rounds on its expansive 7-acre property. Over time, the center needed improved, real-time situational awareness to keep patrons safe while participating in various recreational, sporting and quality-of-life activities. 

New open platform video management software (VMS) from Milestone Systems integrated with a mix of camera and microphone technologies now provides 24/7 monitoring of the multi-service center’s park and building facilities. High-resolution smart cameras, omnidirectional microphones and an intuitive analytic platform combine to help protect patrons and enable the center's staff to do more with less. 

Using software and equipment from several leading security manufacturers, the staff at the Metropolitan Multi-Service Center is now able to continuously survey the entire park and property, monitor for incidents where patrons may need assistance, mitigate risk situations for potential accidents and protect the disability community and other visitors who use the center and its facilities daily. 

An open platform VMS and nearly two dozen high-resolution AI cameras provide 24/7 video monitoring of the facility and its extensive property, including the playground, tennis courts and other wheelchair-accessible areas. The AI cameras with built-in video analytic software were deployed in the main lobby and public spaces to provide 4K video footage as well as object detection and feature extraction, which allows for forensic search for gender, age, clothing color, bag, glasses, masks and other characteristics. 

Twenty omnidirectional microphones that can pick up sound in all directions have been integrated with the video system to alert the staff to patron calls of distress and provide evidence during security events. Using a central workstation, front desk staff can easily monitor camera views and audio throughout the facility and property. 

An open platform VMS, with video analytics and audio sensors, can also identify and send alarms for other types of anomalies. For example, sound sensors can detect raised voices and shouting, glass breaking, object falls or crashes and gunshots. Rules within the VMS can automatically switch to show the camera views for the triggered microphone alarms, helping the staff gain immediate situational awareness of the event. 

Due to advances in video and audio analytics, robust remote connectivity, and the ease of use with VMS systems, video surveillance technologies are now being adapted in a wide range of care facilities to help assure the health and wellness of people with limitations. The use of smart video, audio and other sensors and edge devices are being deployed at convalescent homes, long-term care facilities, retirement homes, hospitals, clinics and at community centers such as MMSC, where services are offered specifically for those with disabilities. 

Before the security upgrade, the center relied strictly on staff rounds to ensure areas were clear and people were safe. With more than seven acres to cover, it was impossible to rely solely on human interaction to check the premises. Now the center’s staff can be alerted in real time if an incident occurs without waiting for an incident report to be filed. There has been a significant improvement in the quality of life of patrons and visitors. 

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Topic Area: Information Technology , Safety , Security

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