Infrastructure:Electric,Gas & Water

Light Rail But Intense Security

They are coming back. What, in the old days, were trolley cars in urban areas are now light rail systems serving metro areas while complementing buses, trains and other transit services.

And security is keeping up through intelligent, integrated application of video.

One example: The Metro Transit Police Department, part of Metro Transit in Minneapolis/St. Paul, is extending its investment in technology, standardizing key parts of its transportation technology platform with video management software (Verint) for its Central Corridor Light Rail Transit project. Moving from its legacy security and business systems to a unified approach, the VMS solution is helping the organization’s Metro Transit Police force advance its ability to monitor and secure the Twin Cities’ current and new light rail and commuter trains and passengers, as well as enhance investigation capabilities and increase response times, according to Brian Weaver, senior asset protection specialist with the Minneapolis Metro Transit Police Department

Convenience, security and safety are all key parts of the service delivery for our organization, adds John Siqvelend, the department’s public relations manager. “We have patrols for visibility but also technology capabilities” to protect the critical transit infrastructure.

“We are one of the largest security video systems with about 5,500 cameras. In 2009, we had an analog cutover, moving to networked IP cameras while consolidating on a single platform for standardization benefits. There is license plate recognition in parking lots. And we boast about three petabytes of video storage. There are 900 buses and 67 light rail cars with five to 12 cameras per vehicle and DVRs,” says Weaver, who adds that a vehicle area network is under construction. GPS for vehicle location is integrated with police dispatch.

There also is IP-based access controls to protect sensitive platform areas and communications cabinets.

The agency covers seven metro counties plus coverage in some adjacent counties. “We have a formal memo of understanding with local police, too,” comments Siqvelend

There also is collaboration with the U.S. Marshals and the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). Transit Police also work as part of a Visible Intermodal Prevention and Response team, a Transportation Security Administration program. VIPR teams cover travelers at railroad stations, bus stations, ferries, car tunnels, ports, subways, truck weigh stations, rest areas, and special events. They also can deploy to deal with chemical, biological, radioactive, nuclear and explosive weapons of mass destruction threats.

The focus is on risk mitigation. “And we make security obvious” to comfort passengers and staff, says Weaver.

Did you enjoy this article? Click here to subscribe to Security Magazine. 

You must login or register in order to post a comment.



Image Galleries

ASIS 2013 Product Preview

ASIS International 59th Annual Seminar and Exhibits, September 24-27 in Chicago, Illinois, will include an exhibit hall packed with innovative security solutions. Here are some of the products that will be shown at ASIS this year.


Virtualization and Data Center Security: What You Need to Know for 2014

Data centers are increasingly becoming the center of the enterprise, and data center and cyber security is following the same path for security departments. According to Justin Flynn, a consultant at the Burwood Group, the virtualization of data centers allows enterprises to scale more easily and faster, with a smaller footprint.

However, hosting enterprise data in the cloud can make intrusion detection more difficult – how can enterprise security leaders team up with other departments to keep aware of cyber risks and traffic, and physical and data compliance during the virtual transition? How can CISOs and CSOs discuss cyber threats with the C-Suite to get the resources they need? And how can the proper infrastructure test and verify possible malicious attacks? 

More Podcasts

Security Magazine

April 2015 security magazine cover

2015 April

In this April 2015 issue of Security, find out how to keep your enterprise resilient after a disaster in 2015. Also discover how to strike a balance between design basis threats and active shooter threats and see what's in store for the 2015 RSA Conference.

Table Of Contents Subscribe

Body Cameras on Security Officers

Body cameras are being used increasingly by police in cities across the U.S. Will you arm your security officers with a body camera?
View Results Poll Archive


Effective Security Management, 5th Edition.jpg
Effective Security Management, 5th Edition

 Effective Security Management, 5e, teaches practicing security professionals how to build their careers by mastering the fundamentals of good management. Charles Sennewald brings a time-tested blend of common sense, wisdom, and humor to this bestselling introduction to workplace dynamics. 

More Products

Clear Seas Research

Clear Seas ResearchWith access to over one million professionals and more than 60 industry-specific publications,Clear Seas Research offers relevant insights from those who know your industry best. Let us customize a market research solution that exceeds your marketing goals.


Facebook 40px 2-12-13 Twitter logo 40px 2-12-13  YouTube  LinkedIn logo 40px 2-12-13Google+

Vertical Sector Focus: Critical Infrastructures

criticalhomepagethumbFrom terrorism to vandalism, it’s preparedness, response, training and partnerships. Learn about some of the critical security issues facing this sector.

Visit the Critical Infrastructure page to read more.