Zaun toppings combat prison riots

folder_openEmergency Services & Health, High Security

A British fencing manufacturer located a stone’s throw from the scene of a ‘full-scale prison riot’ earlier this year has introduced a range of high-security fence, wall and roof toppings to provide enhanced intruder protection for secure establishments and buildings.

A prison officer at England’s largest prison, HMP Oakwood, near Wolverhampton, told BBC Radio 4’s The Report programme there had been a ‘full-scale prison riot’ after G4S, which runs the prison, described the incident as an incident of “concerted indiscipline” by 15 to 20 prisoners.

The officer, who went inside to tackle the violence, told the BBC many more inmates had been involved, and they took over an entire wing of the jail. Some had booby-trapped doorways and were shouting threats from behind a barricade, he said.

Perimeter protection systems manufacturer Zaun, whose headquarters is just three miles nearer Wolverhampton, has introduced a series of toppings to prevent inmates – or intruders or patients – scaling fences or gaining access to rooftops secure institutions.

The Mesh Anti-Climb Topping (MACT) system is see-through and installed in sections, providing clear line-of-sight for CCTV systems and, more prosaically, so blockages, for instance, from wind-blown leaf build-up, can be seen and easily cleared.

MACT can be installed in conjunction with CCTV, PIDs and infra-red alarms and, as standard, includes a wired alarm to alert any attempt to scale the system. It uses the barrel concept, but instead of sheet metal, the tube section is made of anti-climb mesh.

The Flexible Steel Topping (FST) system is fully tested for use in UK high-security prisons. At the heart of FST is a steel mesh arch, curved back over the top of a steel fence, fixed to a flexible steel bracket designed to move when people try to climb it.

Barbed tape is the most common form of protective topping, in either straight wire or spiral concertina, providing a highly visual deterrent and resistance to intrusion.

Zaun also offers electric fence toppings for some of the country’s key infrastructure sites, creating a powerful physical and psychological addiction to secure fencing systems.


About Zaun

Zaun Limited is the sole remaining manufacturer of welded and woven mesh fencing systems that manufactures the entire system in the UK.  Zaun makes the mesh, fencing panels, posts, clamp bars and fixings at its state-of-the-art five-acre production facility in Wolverhampton in the West Midlands.  Products have been tested and approved by testing organisations including CPNI, LPCB and Secured by Design.

Zaun works very closely with all stakeholders within the business including employees, local, national and international suppliers and a long-established customer base of fencing contractors to design, manufacture and supply high-quality fencing systems, increasingly often providing expertise in integrating PIDs and other systems into holistic security solutions.

Zaun was founded in 1996 and remains a private company solely owned by co-founder Alastair Henman with a regional office in Dubai.  They are certified to the ISO 9001 quality standard. It is also a member of the Perimeter Security Suppliers’ Association (PSSA), of which Alastair Henman is a director.

Zaun is a proud British manufacturer and founder member of the Made in Britain campaign, a key player in the UK fencing market and one of the fastest-growing companies in an increasingly competitive industry.

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