How Detention Control Systems Can Help with PREA

Detention Control Systems and PREA

While there are many practical, business-practice aspects of compliance with the law, there are many ways that technologies can help. The primary focus with respect to technology and PREA has revolved around improvements to video surveillance. But, detention control systems can also help with compliance to PREA. While there are many ways that these systems can help, I want to discuss three ways these systems can help.

Detention Systems for Auditing

A significant way that detention control systems can help with PREA is through the reporting system that they provide. Most detention control systems log all activity on the system. These logs can be helpful in telling the whole story surrounding an incident. The logs contain operator actions, such as when the control room operator activated a door. They also contain the door position status. Some systems, like the MTI system, also log breach and prop alarms (see below). Using these logs, the facility administration can get a better picture of how the detention control system was operating and how access to an area was gained.

Important Alarms from Control Systems

Detention control systems can also alert control room operators to certain types of behaviors. As mentioned earlier, the MTI control system can be configured to alert operators to a door that has opened without system activation (a breach). The system can also be configured to monitor the status of the door and alert the operator when the door has been opened for too long (a prop). These two situations are strong indications that improper behavior is underway.

Audio Monitoring in Detention Control Systems

Audio communications through the detention control system’s intercom system can also be a great help for PREA. The MTI intercom system can be configured with Audio Level Monitoring, which is a hardware-level monitoring solution that produces an alarm to the operator when the audio level exceeds a preset limit. So, in the even that a victim is screaming for help, this can produce an alarm to the operator. This alarm can be integrated with the video surveillance system so that the video for that location is automatically displayed to the operator when he or she acknowledges the alarm.

The intercom system can also help with PREA through the use of audio recording. The MTI intercom system can be configured to record all intercom traffic, which is logged to the same activity log mentioned above. This helps when investigating an incident, as the facility administration can also hear the intercom traffic related to the incident.


These are just three simple ways in which detention control systems can help with PREA compliance. There are many other ways that these systems can help, and the MTI control system can be customized to provide a level of monitoring and response that is unique for detention facilities. If you would like to find out more about how the MTI control system can help with your PREA compliance, please give us a call at 1-800-392-8292.