West Sacramento Port Upgrades Video

security surveillance at ports

It takes an intricate and well-established security infrastructure to protect a port, even a small one such as the Port of West Sacramento. Following strict security regulations from the Department of Homeland Security and U.S. Coast Guard, the Port made the commitment to install a new video surveillance system.

At the entrance to the facility contract security officers from All Phase Security watch camera views of the port 24/7 in real-time and they can also view video archives as needed. They conduct virtual tours of the premises with PTZ to make sure all is well. Over 30 cameras, including Sony fixed cameras and PTZ models as well as FLIR thermal imaging cameras supply views throughout the port, and a video management software system from OnSSI provides a simplified, intuitive way to manage video feeds effectively.

“Digital systems are still pretty expensive, and it takes foresight to understand that the investment is worth it,” said Tim Huntsinger, chief operating officer, All Phase Security, a consultant on the new video system installed at the port. “The city of West Sacramento is showing that a small city with a small port is willing to take on the challenge of installing a new system with an eye toward future growth.”


Port provides easy access

The inland Port of West Sacramento is located about 90 miles northeast of San Francisco, at the Sacramento River Deep Water Channel in the City of West Sacramento. Centered in one of the richest agricultural and industrial regions in the world, the port has been an integral part of the community since terminal construction began in 1962 and the first ship arrived in 1963. The deep-water port helps to lower freight costs, create local jobs and provide industrial development to the area.

The 43-mile channel reaches from the Sacramento River into Rio Vista through the Delta into the City of West Sacramento, located in Yolo County. In 2005, the City of West Sacramento took control of the Port of Sacramento and renamed it in 2008 as the Port of West Sacramento. The port provides easy access to shipping for farmers in Northern California, especially those exporting bagged and bulk rice.

When the Port of West Sacramento was looking to upgrade the video system, they brought All Phase Security in as a consultant. The project started in January 2010 and was completed the following August.

All Phase Security handles physical security at the port and employs about 10 security officers whose main missions are access control and perimeter security. All Phase Security reports directly to port management, which is part of the West Sacramento city staff. Officers include a roving vessel patrol in the port and a 24-hour officer stationed at the gate to monitor ingress/egress and to keep watch on a monitor displaying video from the surveillance system.

Having witnessed the evolution of voice-over-IP in the telecommunications market, system installer World Telecom & Surveillance Inc., (WT&S) Redding, Calif., was well-equipped to oversee the Port of West Sacramento’s transition to networked video. A low-voltage contractor for 10 years, WT&S has seen its business evolve into the surveillance field for the last six.


Fiber and wireless transmission

The signals from over 30 cameras located throughout the port’s premises are transmitted across fiber-optic networks, including about 30,000 feet of new fiber installed by WT&S as well as wireless devices. There is a run of 24-strand single mode fiber from each guard station to the server, a Dynamic Network Factory Security (DNF Security) Seahawk server that is the video management engine. It is attached to a RAID5 array for 24 terabytes of video storage (about 30 days). The server, installed in an above-ground vault, runs OnSSI’s IP-based video management software.

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