Every fence specifier wants to meet fencing standards in the most efficient and cost-saving way.
In security fencing, cutting corners isn’t an option.
Attempting to value engineer accredited fencing will cause issues. There are several elements that make a fence compliant with standards such as the LPCB LPS 1175 A1 (previously SR1) rating, that can’t be value engineered.
By wrongly stating that a fence is compliant standards, you’re putting your business reputation in danger, along with the physical implications of an inefficient fence.
We have been asked whether it is possible to purchase the components of a fence from separate suppliers, with the understanding that the panel is tested and approved to an LPS 1175 standard or commonly included within a rated fencing system.
Does this mean those elements, when combined, create a fencing system that conforms to LPCB’s standards?
So, Can I Purchase The Components Of 385 Mesh Fencing Separately To Achieve LPS 1175 A1 Rating?
In recent years, manufacturers have been testing 358 mesh to the LPS 1175 A1 rating (previously SR1). This means it is accredited by the Loss Prevention Certification Board, part of BRE Global to prevent an opportunist attacker using bodily force and basic tools from gaining access for more than 60 seconds.
Naturally, people aim to get a 358 security fencing solution for the cheapest they can.
Often, security fencing is an afterthought in the project. When the project is tight on budget, fencing can be seen as an easy target to reduce spend, especially when independently accredited fencing has been specified.
Accredited fencing costs manufacturers to put the products through testing, auditing, and certification. Plus, accredited security fences typically have more steel than standard mesh and palisade fencing, adding more product cost.
This means that cutting costs equals cutting standard requirements.
The Negative Impact Of Cutting Corners In Data Centre Fencing
If the resulting fence hasn’t been tested to these standards as a complete system, it would be irresponsible to label it as so.
Ultimately, this means that value engineering isn’t beneficial to fencing specifiers.
Often, each component will have been tested in a specific circumstance. For example, it wouldn’t be possible to purchase a 358 mesh panel and achieve LPS 1175 A1 358 security fencing, without having the entire structure tested. Regardless of the fact 358 mesh panel is considered accredited when part of some larger fencing systems.
Ultimately, by not getting your whole fence tested and certified, you are putting your site, your personnel, and your reputation at risk as a result of trying to cut corners.
What The LPS 1175 Certification Covers
The LPCB provide rigorous testing of building products.
Achieving the accreditation means covering the complete system, including the strength of the panel, how the fence is attached to the posts, the height of the system and how it is secured to the ground.
When you start testing entrance products such as gates and turnstiles, the accreditation also looks at how they sit together, making sure you are fully protected against the threat.
Every component must work together to make the perimeter as safe as possible against attackers.
What Can Go Wrong When Considering Value Engineering?
When testing fence systems, the LPCB investigate everything about the fence, not just the panel. Therefore, by purchasing a panel of 358 mesh and combining it with posts from a separate supplier, you are sacrificing the efficiency of the structure.
This will not be efficient 358 security fencing.
If any single element differs, the system could be compromised.
There is a vast range of the things that could not in compliant with an LPS 1175 A1 accredited system.
- Only 4mm steel wires delay the snips for long enough, meaning manufacturers must produce paperwork and are audited twice yearly to ensure they have supplied the correct panel. In the past, systems use wires that appear to be thick enough, but it is actually plastic coating on thinner wires, which is cheaper but won’t achieve the required security delay.
- If you are making your own system, there’s no specification on the post sizes or the fixings that secure the panel to the posts. If a 358 panel was secured on poles with a few fixings, it wouldn’t prevent an opportunist attacker from gaining access for more than 60 seconds.
- If the panel is not dug far enough into the ground, the panel could be prized upwards.
- LPS 1175 certification also has minimum height requirements at each security level. LPS 1175 A1 fencing has a minimum height of 1.8metres, whereas LPS 1175 B3 fencing has a minimum height of 2metres. This height must be maintained around the whole perimeter, including where ground is uneven, and the system is stepped. This means you may need taller posts and panels for mesh fencing to maintain the minimum height.
Also, if you are looking for a Secured By Design rating, the system must be officially LPS 1175 certified.
Correct installation and rigorous testing are the only ways to provide a secure fence.
What Proper Testing On 358 Security Fencing Can Do
A fence that is rigorously assessed by the LPCB to PLS 1175 A1 standards will only pass if it provides exceptional performance, resistance and integrity against bodily force and basic tools for over 60 seconds.
In terms of aesthetics, having a fencing system that meets LPS 1175 standard allows you to meet visual criteria.
For example, the fence structure looks better and safer when fitted correctly. Attempting to construct this with various components from different sellers won’t give the same aesthetic appeal.
Furthermore, by having your whole system tested regularly, you can be sure that all parts of the fence are working as they should be. If you attempt to purchase the panel separately to the clamps and posts, these might have issues that are wrongly labelled as LPS 1175 A1 rated.
This will have a negative impact on the reputation of your business, as ultimately, this fence will fail.
When it comes to security fencing, value engineering might seem to save you money upfront, however, it has many likely negative impacts.
You will not achieve an LPS 1175 standard fence by attempting to piece together various accredited components. The whole structure needs to be tested and installed as per the drawings to have peace of mind that you have an efficient and safe fence.
A successful break in shows weaknesses in your security provision and can lead to reputational damage.
If you are looking for an approved fence, Barkers Fencing provide a variety of approved security fences that are tested as an entire structure.
Contact Barkers Fencing today for more advice on the type of security fencing you need, or for more advice on fencing standards.