Specifying Security Fencing For Water Treatment Plants

Security fencing is an absolute must for water treatment plants due to protecting utility sites from unwanted access.

With over 66 million people in the United Kingdom reliant on clean water, any security issue that could jeopardise our safety must be addressed. And it’s for this reason that perimeter security’s duty of keeping people out is critical.

When it comes to water treatment plants, every security solution should always include the ‘worst-case scenario’ – right down to more common concerns, and the threats we’re talking about are:

  • Poisoning the UK’s water supply on purpose
  • Accidental contamination
  • Natural disasters
  • Pollution

Read on to find out more about specifying security fencing for water treatment plants, to keep your site well protected…


Reviewing Your Site With Tested Fencing Systems

Due to many utility sites, such as water treatment plants, remaining unmanned for long periods, physical security measures such as perimeter security and access control are necessary to protect water treatment plant facilities and their assets.

To review physical security measures at your site, begin by conducting a detailed Risk and Threat Assessment to not only identify but also prioritise potential risks to your site’s physical security.

To acquire a thorough view of your site’s security, use the Onion Principle: View your security as an intruder looking in, with the most valuable target at the centre, rather than as someone who knows the site looking out.

The outer edges of your property limits should be seen as the exterior perimeter when analysing your site and should be assessed in terms of both aesthetics and security requirements, such as fencing height and Security Rating.

Entrance control is also crucial to consider; controlling who comes in and keeping unauthorised visitors out is essential to site security. Is an automated solution, such as automated gates or turnstiles, required?


Ensure Your Utility Site Is Future-Proof

When it comes to security infrastructure for a utilities site – particularly a water treatment plant – it’s crucial that the specifier invests in a long-term solution, as opposed to one that’s cheapest. With a water treatment plant, the risks are too great.

Any security product must be fit-for-purpose and have undergone extensive testing to ensure that it provides a high level of protection that will not be compromised.


Tested Security Fencing For Water Treatment Works Security

We always urge specifiers to choose tested security products to prevent security breaches at your water treatment facility.

According to Water UK, LPS 1175 is the preferred specification for the water sector.



What Is  LPS 1175 Security Fencing?

Simply defined, a LPS (Loss Prevention Standard) 1175 rated security fence or gate has been physically tested to prevent a person from breaking its fabric or structure by a third-party accreditation authority.

The LPCB, which developed LPS 1175, regularly updates it, with Issue 8 being the most recent released in Jan 2019. The previous Issue 7, which ranged from SR1 to SR8, has been substituted by this new set of Security Ratings.

It’s now a lot more fluid in its approach, with a Threat classified into toolkits (letters A through H) and a Delay (numerical value in minutes: 1, 3, 5, 10, 15 or 20).

This method is more practical since it implies that security provisions can defend against a specific threat and build up a delay over multiple layers of security.

To put things in perspective, the vast majority of items (95%) fail the testing procedure, emphasising how stringent the requirements are.


Tested Fencing System Solution

Whether to use palisade or mesh fencing is one of the most common questions we get asked, regardless of the context.

And, contrary to popular belief, there are several differences between palisade and mesh fencing that go beyond aesthetics.

Water sanitation and treatment services are provided by 34 firms around the UK, many of which are located in open, rural locations. These types of environments are often located within uneven grounds…

When it comes to installation, mesh fencing can be challenging on uneven areas. This is because the panels are inflexible.

Therefore, when approaching uneven surfaces there will either be a gap under the fence, or the fence has to be burrowed in the ground and ultimately stepped, meaning it will end up slowing down installation and adding cost to the project.

Palisade security fencing is intimidating in appearance and durability when keeping unwanted access out.


Entrance Security

While perimeter security is key for a water treatment facility, you should also think about what entrance security items would be best for you. Remember that water treatment plants can be left unattended for long periods of time.

It’s important to choose turnstiles that have the same security rating as the fencing line for any high-security, unmanned entrance. Failure to do so will result in a perimeter ‘weak spot.’

It’s worth considering an authorised LPS 1175 turnstile for unmanned gates, such as TurnGuard Pro, which has been designed to complement any Barkers LPS 1175 certified fence line.



When it comes to security infrastructure for a water treatment facility – or any other utilities site – you need to think long-term rather than short-term that’s driven by price.

After all, the risks of a security breach in a water treatment facility will exceed any initial investment.

To learn more about Barkers Fencing’s security solutions for utilities facilities – check out our most recent case study, where our StronGuard™ SR3 Palisade was used at Essex & Suffolk Water.