Closing the door on substation crime

Hodgson Sayers warns that although the nature of threats change, energy networks would be rash to overlook a strategy for physical security.

Closing the door on substation crime

As electricity networks become increasingly digitised and connected it is cybercrime that is viewed as the biggest threat to the lights staying on. But the threat of physical crime is an ever-present one that energy networks cannot afford to ignore.

It was reported that last year that network operator SP Energy Networks saw a staggering 600% rise in metal thefts from electricity substations across Merseyside and Cheshire in 2016, leading to the company offering a reward of £10,000 for information.

Replacing transistors is an expensive and lengthy process, but network operators also face a costly challenge maintaining estate security over their vast regional geographical area.

  • Epsilon and Apeiron are the only upgradable door sets covering LPS 1175: Issue 7 Security Rating 1/2/3/4.
  • Upgrading offers savings typically in excess of 30% at the 1st increment stage (eg SR1 to 2) and closer to 60% at the second increment (eg SR3 to 4).
  • The outer leaf of the products create an interleave with the corresponding interleave of the next door. This patented sealing mechanism provides a barrier even up to LPS 1175 level 4 attacks. The door sets at level 3 and 4 are equipped with four horizontally acting ‘dogs’ on each door. The ‘dogs’ provide an added security benefit preventing force being applied between the door and the outer frame during lever or crow bar attacks.

Added to this, security is not a one-time solution. The dynamics of the threat can be easily influenced locally, and are likely to change in nature over time, leading to a reluctance to invest in a system that will not be able to meet the threats of tomorrow.

One significant point of weakness in substation security is also the most obvious point of entry. Door hinges are vulnerable to attack. Following extensive market research, Hodgson Sayers has developed a new generation of security door sets built on a patented sealing mechanism for total concealment of hinges, making them virtually impenetrable.

But good security needs to be adaptable. Both the Epsilon and Apeiron door-sets can be upgraded on-site, without the need work to be carried out in a manufacturing or maintenance facility. Such an approach can save up to 50% on a replacement system. Upgradability means the initial investment is not only safe but provides a ‘Fast-track’ to achieving the correct level of security.


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