Security Put To The Test
Security window wins prestigious healthcare ‘Best Construction Product’ award
A Eurocell fabricator is celebrating winning 'Best Construction Product' for its Safevent window at the prestigious ‘Building Better Healthcare’ Awards.
Eurocell collaborated with its approved fabricator to develop the Safevent anti-ligature security window, in order to meet the needs of its customers for secure units. The window is now being installed across a much wider range of healthcare projects. The Safevent window uses Eurocell profiles with Pilkington Activ™ self-cleaning glass as its major components.
The Building Better Healthcare Awards is organised by Architects for Health and aims to recognise individuals and organisations who share an interest in excellence in healthcare facility design. Judged by leading experts in the field of architecture and design and build, Safevent won against strong competition.
Ian Kernaghan, Product Design Manager at Eurocell, explains: "After coming up with the original design, Eurocell’s profile range and design team were key to the further development of the product, as it allowed us to produce a solution that is very simple in its principles and execution, but which more than satisfies the strict criteria of clients."
The Safevent window has an in-line horizontal sliding action, which allows up to 50 per cent of the window area to open without the need for hinges, locking points, levers or handles that may be used as ligature points. It has an easy sliding action that allows frail or elderly patients to operate it unassisted.
Safevent’s open area is covered with sheet stainless steel punched with tiny holes to create a virtually invisible mesh. This prevents escape and the passing of contraband, while allowing fresh air, natural sound and light to enter the room.
As proven by extensive and rigorous independent testing, the Safevent window is highly secure, whilst also complying with thermal performance requirements, in accordance with Part L of the Building Regulations. Crucially, the windows provide an appearance and performance similar to that of conventional frames.
Safevent also won through to the finals of 'Best Ecological Product', principally because it allows the window to be opened fully, providing adequate natural ventilation and therefore reducing reliance on mechanical and electrical cooling systems. Previously, windows supplied into any hospital, school or similar developments had to comply with Building Regulations, which state they must only be capable of opening to between 100mm and 150mm and therefore in summer would often require air conditioning in every room.
Reducing reliance on air conditioning is better for the environment as it saves a huge amount of electricity – on one particular project, they reduced the utility bill by more than £250,000 during the first year after fitting Safevent windows.
The BRE Green Guide recently awarded PVC-U an 'A+' rating for sustainability when used in commercial developments, the highest possible, which helps with the ecological credentials of the Safevent window.
Since being launched, the Safevent system has been used by more than 20 different NHS Trusts and private hospital companies on more than 100 projects. Clients include Laing O’Rourke, Kier, Costain, Interserve, Balfour Beatty, Bethels, AllenBuild, Morgan Ashurst and many more.