A Guard tour patrol system is a system for logging the rounds of employees in a variety of situations such as Security guards patrolling property, technicians monitoring climate-controlled environments, and correctional officers checking prisoner living areas. It helps ensure that the employee makes his or her appointed rounds at the correct intervals and can offer a virtually indisputable record for legal or insurance reasons.
Essentially, the system provides a means to record the time when the employee reaches certain important points on their tour (and, of course, the fact that they reached these points at all). Checkpoints or Watch stations are commonly placed at the extreme ends of the tour route and at critical points such as vaults, specimen refrigerators, vital equipment, access points, etc. Some systems are set so that the interval between stations is timed so if the employee fails to reach each point within a set time, other staffs are dispatched to investigate and ensure the employee’s well-being.
An example of a modern set-up might work as follows: The employee carries an portable electronic sensor (PES) or electronic data collector which is activated at each checkpoint. Checkpoints can consist of iButton semiconductors, magnetic strips, proximity microchips such as RFIDs, or optical barcodes. The data collector stores the serial number of the checkpoint with the date and time. Later, the information is downloaded from the collector into a computer where the checkpoint’s serial number will have an assigned location (i.e. North Perimeter Fence, Cell Number 1, etc.). Data collectors can also be programmed to ignore duplicate checkpoint activations that occur sequentially or within a certain time period. Computer software used to compile the data from the collector can print out summaries that pinpoint missed checkpoints or patrols without the operator having to review all the data collected. Devices can be subject to misuse or heavy wear and tear, to ensure that these devices protect themselves from the working environment the higher end devices have built in microwave, g-force and voltage detection.