Wicked Electrical Storm Forces Emergency Upgrade of Phone System & Presents Opportunity to Add Special Security Features
When a powerful storm swept through metropolitan Washington, D.C. early last summer, an electrical strike knocked out the entire communications system at Holy Redeemer School in nearby Kensington, MD, leaving the Catholic school without telephone service. About the only good thing about the incident was that the K-8 students were on summer break and not due to return for a couple of months. Still, the school had to make a series of quick decisions about how to restore phone service.
Everyone knew it didn’t make sense to repair the aging phone system, as was evident from replacement planning begun even before disaster struck. The cabling dated back to 1950 when the school was built and was not likely to be reused. It quickly became a question of what kind of phone system to install, and, more importantly, did the school have any special communications needs that could now be addressed?
In addition to supporting 13 phones with room for future expansion, the school needed a system that could also bring significant security benefits to the table. The administrators had two capabilities in mind: 1) monitor each of the school’s main entry/exit ways from the front office and 2) remotely open each door without leaving the office.
With these criteria in mind, Panasonic’s modular and highly flexible KX-NCP1000 Network Communications Platform as the core business telephone system was recommended. In addition to accommodating near-term growth and future expansion—which as it turned out would include moving the rectory’s phone system onto the NCP platform at some point—the NCP1000 made it possible to converge disparate phone systems that had been haphazardly cobbled together over the years into a single state-of-the-art IP telephone system. Robust electrical protection was already built in to the NCP to ensure that future thunderstorms would not put the school’s converged data and phone network at risk. Finally, the NCP1000’s modular architecture would easily accommodate the desired security features with room
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