London Event Requires Large-Scale Window Film InstallationsJuly 19th, 2012 by Editor
This July, London has been bustling with preparations to welcome the world and recognize the world’s best athletes. Part of those preparations have included large-scale window film installations to protect people and property in the event of a terrorist attack or bombing. Some of the buildings being outfitted with security film include Wembley Arena, Wembley Plaza Hotel, Earl’s Court and select buildings in and around London Stratford. The buildings had 7-mil security film applied, as well as some minor sun control film.
“There is a greater awareness of the terrorist threat here so security film use and application is more common than it is in the States,” says Steve Chambers, managing director for Pentagon Protection, who was involved in the project. “It is an accepted method to minimize injuries from bomb blasts to people and property and to provide safety glazing. Security film is a lot more common here in the United Kingdom and Ireland because there have been more frequent bombings over the years, especially in Northern Ireland and London.”
Ross Kehl, international operations manager for Pentagon, provided project management and oversaw all installations and crews throughout the project.
“It was a tremendous challenge,” says Kehl about the London installations. “It works differently in London than in the U.S. Since it was such a high-profile event everyone had to go through several security inductions. In addition to the main security indoctrination, which included a photo ID, finger print recognition and pink badge, each site has a separate induction. Each venue’s induction would take from 10 minutes to three hours.”
Overall 400,000 square feet of safety film were installed and Kehl’s team was just one of many dealers involved.
“We were responsible for approximately 80,000 square feet and used six to eight installers,” says Kehl. “Because everything started a month later than originally planned we were really spread out. They wanted someone working at each site, which isn’t the most productive and efficient way to tackle large scale projects. I wanted to concentrate all my forces at one site—knock it out—then on to the next one. They were panicking and worried we wouldn’t be able to finish in time. We eventually finished Earl’s Court and the Plaza Hotel doing it their way and then I was able to pool all my installers to focus on the other venues. We had only six days left to finish [more than] 20,000 square feet and 95 percent of it required lifts and booms. I thought, ‘stand back and watch how it’s supposed to work.’ It looked like an ant farm and we knocked it out in time. We finished on Friday the 13th—who says that’s an unlucky day?”
For the full story on these London security film installations see the September/October issue of Window Film magazine.