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Perimeter Intruder Detection For Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Plants – Case Study

by Aug 16, 2019

The Challenge

Installing a Perimeter Security Measure on a Busy, Active Perimeter

Almac’s global headquarters site in Craigavon, Northern Ireland provides an extensive range of integrated services across the drug development lifecycle to the pharmaceutical and biotech sectors globally.

As a global exporter of prescription drugs Almac must meet the regulatory requirements of all countries to which they export for the storage and handling of prescription drugs.

The United States Food and Drug Administration’s federal regulation outlines the minimum requirements for the storage and handling of prescription drugs and for the establishment and maintenance of prescription drug distribution records (Sec. 205.50), one aspect of which is that “all facilities shall be equipped with an alarm system to detect entry after hours.”

Almac had been using a CCTV security system however it did not meet the US FDA standards for the facility as it did not alert security staff to intruders in real-time and by the time intruders were caught, it could be too late.

The possible outcomes of a successful intrusion of the facility included:


  • Risks to the wellbeing of a large staff force
  • Loss of earnings due to stolen product
  • Damage to expensive equipment and materials
  • Chemical damage, burns and explosions from mishandled materials
  • Injury to the intruder(s) themselves leading to duty of care lawsuits
  • Most importantly; dangerous chemicals and drugs making their way into the streets

However, the installation of a Perimeter Intruder Detection System itself posed a number of challenges including the need for 24/7 access to the facility by staff, visitors and logistics operators including large vehicles and machinery. In particular, downtime during installation had to be minimal so as not to disturb the organisation’s substantial delivery schedule.

The Solution

The Ultimate Security System: Radar for Detection, with Cameras for Validation


Almac Security Officer, Wayne McMeekin, approached Sensurity to enquire about perimeter intruder detection that would meet the US FDA requirements.

“Wayne had a pretty good idea of what he wanted”, recalled Sensurity CEO, Geoff Clarke, “Yes, they were implementing the system to meet the FDA requirements, but they also saw a real opportunity to improve their existing CCTV system through integration with Sensurity’s intruder detection products.”

Sensurity provided a quote for 35 Halo units to integrate with CCTV cameras. In the event of an intrusion, the Halo system acts as the primary method of detection while the pan-tilt-zoom cameras react to the Halo alarm by turning to the space in which the alarm was activated. This allows the 24/7 security officer to remotely validate and respond to alarms.

“As Halo has a much higher probability of detection and much lower false alarm rate than motion detection and thermal cameras, as well as a much greater detection zone per unit, using Halo as the first line of intruder detection and cameras as a method of validation greatly improved the productivity of Almac’s security efforts,” said Mr. Clarke.

The dual-technology radar and infrared units could be installed back-to-back as opposed to the traditional overlapping configuration of most radar intruder detection systems. This back-to-back configuration was essential to save space on the installation footprint, and cover Almac’s irregular and confined perimeter.

“In logistics, space is money”, explained Mr. Clarke, “The larger the installation footprint of the intruder system, the less space our client has for storage containers and machinery parking. A tight installation footprint was one of our main priorities when developing Halo.”

Halo also has one of the narrowest detection zones of any radar intruder detection product, at as narrow as two meters. In Almac’s case, the system was installed between fences and walls, paths and walls, and treelines and fences. The ten-meter height of the Halo detection zone ensures that even with the assistance of tall vehicles, intruders cannot jump over the three meter perimeter fence to nearby buildings and containers, without being caught by HALO’s detection zone.

Almac’s access requirements were met by placing the Halo devices on a timer which engaged the system outside of office hours. The remote control and calibration of the system allowed Almac’s 24/7 security guard to respond to alarms quickly and easily, with less manual patrols.

The Outcome

100% Intrusion Detection

The first three Halo units have now been installed at the site’s most vulnerable stretch of perimeter, characterised by being close to a main road, mostly hidden from view, only than two meters of free space between the fence and nearby wall, and a history of high intruder incident rates.

ALMAC are assured of 24/7 protection of their property where no intruder can hack, break or penetrate the microwave radar and infrared detection systems.


If you think there’s a “slight chance” HALO can save your site from malicious intruders, you should sign up for installation today.

You can try HALO and see if it’s right for your site over the next 90 days. No guess work needed. Use the system and see for yourself.

If it isn’t right for you, email us at [email protected] within 90 days of installation and we’ll uninstall the system and give you a prompt refund, no questions asked.

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