The company’s Decra Elegance tile, which was recently launched in new satin and high-gloss finishes, as well as its existing Decra Classic, Decra Stratos and Decra Plus tiles have all been tested to LPS 1175 Level 1 with certification through the BRE.
This means that the Decra products are the only roofing products in the UK that can supply a roof to a Police Preferred Specification. This news will be circulated by SBD to police crime prevention departments and planning departments in local authorities throughout the UK and around Europe via national police forces that co-operate internationally on the Secured by Design initiative.
Jon Cole, licensing and technical manager for the Association of Chief Police Officers which manages the scheme, said:
“LPS 1175 can be quite a demanding standard to pass and traditionally it isn’t normal for roofing system manufacturers to be so far-thinking to include security within their specification. Decra has achieved an impressive feat of engineering in the design of these tiles.”
Roof security is becoming more of an important issue as many roofs are damaged by wanton vandalism which results in costly repairs and potentially can damage the contents of a building or make it inhabitable for use. Similarly, thieves frustrated from breaking and entering into high profile premises which could contain drugs, or expensive IT equipment by ever more efficient locks and shutters on doors and windows are more and more turning to other vulnerable areas of the targeted buildings.
They quickly learn that most concrete and clay roof tiles and many slates are not securely fixed to the roof structure and can therefore be easily removed and access gained into a building. These criminals are also aware that breaking into a building through a roof leaves virtually no visible signs of entry until long after they have gone meaning that time is on their side while they are carrying out the crime.
The Decra system prevents this and although this benefit has been known for some time about Decra products it is now recognised by obtaining an international standard in the Secured by Design accreditation.
The tests for Decra involved dynamic and manual interventions over a total of two days using tools such as levers, screwdrivers, knives, spanners and rope on dozens of elements of a Decra roof system installed on a rig.
Secured By Design is cited as best practice in the Safer Places document published by the ODPM and housing associations are compelled to build to certain specifications of SBD by the Housing Corporation.
Local authority housing officers are also compelled to consider crime prevention when refurbishing their housing stock and many now use SBD as their minimum standard for security. Research shows SBD leads to a 50% drop in crime rates when comparing SBD and non-SBD developments of the same age and type in similar areas.
Obtaining the SBD accreditation makes Decra products a serious option for all building designers who are looking to design public health buildings, offices, retail and commercial premises which will contain high value portable items attractive to criminals but where design needs dictate a traditional building appearance.