A panic room is a specially designed area for the protection of people. They are not the same as a vault, as these are used for possessions rather than individuals. Panic rooms are often implemented as another level of security in the home or office. They are usually a more extreme resort when other systems or prevention methods have been breached or have failed. Examples of this includes locks, alarms, fences CCTV and patrols. This is when having a panic room can be extremely useful as a method of keeping both you and your loved ones in a secure environment.
There is a wide variety of options available if you are looking to install a panic room in either your home or office. They range from a basic room that has been made increasingly secure with reinforced walls, windows and doors, all the way to elaborate mini fortresses. These extreme panic rooms are designed to protect the occupants from a range of threats including nuclear and biological attacks as well as simple home invasions. High-end panic rooms constructed with the most advanced composites and materials can be as luxurious as the main living quarters of the home or offices. They don't necessarily need to look like concrete lined cellars. This can be an important factor if the occupants may need to spend an extended period of time in the panic room before external help is sent.
Why install panic rooms?
To understand the reasons why an individual would want to have a safe room within their home or office, it is important to factor in the potential risks or threats they may be exposed to. Creating sufficient provisions to protect against these risks is vital in ensuring the safety of the individuals.
As a general outline the threat and risk assessment would look at the following:
- What is the potential threat? Is it a real active risk or perceived? This could include theft, burglary (aggravated or otherwise), violent occupation, kidnap or hostage activity, assassination and terrorist activity.
- To what level of attack must the structural integrity of the room withstand? For example think of the likely weapons used by the attackers i.e. hammer, crowbar, hydraulic door ram, firearm - low and high calibre rounds, fire, gas and explosives.
- Location of building and likely Police response time.
- How many people need to use the room for refuge? Multiple staff members, a family, young children etc.
- Type of property (New build, built, Listed building).
- Possible points of entry.
- Communication, alarms, alerts, CCTV, Physical security.
- Safe air, food & water supply.
- Stand-alone power supply.
- Medical supplies and the health and pre-existing conditions of the likely occupants
In addition, these types of plans require a thorough structural survey by a qualified structural engineer to confirm that the room can be installed without damaging the integrity of the building and to ensure that the building will support the additional loading and disturbance during the panic room build etc.
Who needs a Panic Room?
Panic rooms are mostly requested by high net worth individuals, high-level executives, politicians and celebrities. There is now a rising trend for large corporations having them installed to protect their key personnel from disgruntled employees, malcontents and potential attacks due to the sensitive nature of their work. Whatever the reason for wanting a panic room, we will ensure that you will get a professionally installed, fit for purpose room to keep you and your loved ones safe.
One of the most important aspects of installing a safe room is confidentiality. At Sec Tech UK privacy is assured and you can be certain that our team operates with complete trust and discretion.
Panic Rooms - the public perception
To a lot of people, the term ''Panic Room'' makes them think of the Jodie Foster film (2002) when she hides in a safe room in her New York house. Despite having surveillance equipment, supplies etc. things don't go according to plan for her. In our opinion this film has done a lot to misrepresent panic rooms so let's try to put a few things straight.
Panic rooms are a lot less dangerous and a lot less exciting than they sound. They are normally called ''safe rooms'' or in some cases 'concealed, secure environments'. They are not a new invention. Medieval feudal lords had safe rooms to protect them if their house or castle was under siege. Another early panic room was the 'Priest holes' designed to hide Catholic priests during the 17th century when persecution of Catholics was at its height here in England. Safe rooms/panic rooms are simply a safe place to be concealed or hidden in until help arrives and then probably only for less than an hour or so, not several days as depicted in the film. They can be high tech and fully equipped depending upon the threat and the risk but they don't necessarily need to be.