Today's IP CCTV systems come with a vast array of great features – what sometimes can be difficult to figure out, is how they can be used in fields other than surveillance.

Let's use an industrial environment as an example – it's possible to utilise CCTV to provide an 'early warning system' of any issues. As these environments are often difficult to work in, with health and safety being a huge factor in how workers are able to operate, having such a system in place is invaluable.

In this blog, we'll be looking at how IP security cameras can monitor industrial work equipment and machinery, looking after health and safety and reducing downtime as a result.

Using IP CCTV systems as an early warning system in an industrial environment

Here's how IP CCTV systems can provide those early warnings: audio alerts.

Imagine you're on the shop floor and you hear a loud bang – you'll obviously be in a position to investigate the issue. But what about if it happens when you're not there? Or it occurs in the middle of the night?

IP cameras contain audio inputs that enable the set-up of alerts for whenever the volume rises above a set level.

With these alerts, the security team can inform the maintenance team of the event so they can go and investigate. Dependent on the number of cameras that are present, it is possible to pinpoint the precise location of where the noise emanated from, by comparing the detected audio levels. detecting overheating, with thermal detection.

Mainly used for perimeter protection, thermal security cameras provide a heat map of the areas it monitors; the cool areas shown in dark colours, the warm areas in increasingly brighter colours. The contrast between the cold ground and a person packed full of body heat will raise an alarm based on this.

One of the lesser-known uses of IP CCTV systems, with heat mapping capabilities, is to spot temperature changes visibly. To enable this mode, the normal colour pallet can be amended to show the standard temperature as being 'cool' – this will allow the user to see a change from normal temperature and use it to set up an alarm that triggers when it detects heat signatures. Ideal to use against the overheating of machinery. monitoring levels.

For this example, imagine you have a tank or any other container from which you'd like to receive alerts whenever the level inside drops or rises. There a few different ways you can do this with IP CCTV, including:

Motion detection

In the past, video motion detection has had a mediocre reputation as (older systems) were prone to setting off false alarms. The technology has vastly improved within the last decade, however, and with an increase of processing power, video motion detection is now a useful tool.

In order to get motion detection working at its best, the user will need to set which parts of a scene they're interested in. The precise terminology will vary by manufacturer but most will allow the user to set areas they want to monitor, and others to ignore. You wouldn't want to receive an alert every time the light grows lighter or darker, or when someone walks past, for example.

General 'ignore filters' include short-lived objects, swaying objects (such as trees) and small objects. Whilst it may take some patience (and falsealarms) to get the balance of the motion detection in IP CCTV systems right, ultimately it will provide a great way to monitor levels within the tank.


If the user is particularly concerned about the accuracy of motion detection, then using a tripwire as part of the CCTV system is a great alternative.

Classically used to detect intruders, a tripwire can also be utilised to monitor levels too. It works by using the interface of the camera to draw a virtual line across the user's field of monitoring – and once that line is breached, an alarm is triggered. The tripwire can be set to the level at which the material in the tank is allowed to rise to, then when/if it breaches that, the alarm will be triggered.

Combine with a separate physical mentoring device

In order to create extremely accurate alerts, networking a monitoring device to their security system will allow the user to create alerts based solely on the readouts produced by the device. This can be done by simply connecting the monitor through the input ports on the IP camera.

To conclude, by rethinking existing technology and applications in a different way, IP CCTV systems can be used as early warning systems. This will help to keep everything running smoothly and safely, and thereby reducing downtime.

If you're interested in learning more about the benefits that an IP security system can have for your business, why not get in touch with the experts here at Maxtag?

Choose Maxtag for high-quality monitoring and security equipment

Having been operating within the industry for over 20 years, we have established a leading service that has helped numerous businesses, public and private institutions to safeguard their security. Regardless of your requirements, the budget you have available or the set-up of your building,we have proven experience of creating security solutionsthat are able to protect and improve the operational capabilities of our clients.

To learn more about our range of IP CCTV systems, you can get in touch with us by calling 0800 044 3160 or you can send an e-mail to us at

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MAXTAG (UK) Limited

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0800 044 3160