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Custodial Cells represent one of the toughest environments for lighting fixtures as prisoners are unsupervised for the majority of the time. In the UK there are two types of cells, “standard” and “safer”, which both follow stringent specifications set out by the MoJ.

In both cell types, luminaires must be physically robust and tamper resistant. Whereas “safer cells” require anti-ligature light fittings to prevent self-harming. Since 1963, we have led the way in designing and manufacturing vandal resistant luminaires. We have developed lighting which goes above and beyond the IK scale of measuring vandal resistance.

The IK scale goes up to IK11, certifying that a luminaire can resist an impact of up to 50 joules of energy. However, in custodial environments this level of impact resistance is simply not adequate. Our drop-test rig creates impacts up to 250 joules of energy, 5 times more than an IK11 rated fitting. This rigorous testing process ensures our custodial luminaires are robustly constructed and fit for purpose in line with the MoJ’s standards.

To resist extended periods of naked flame attack, specially designed diffusers stop holes being created which could be used to attach ligatures or store contraband. The logistics of moving prisoners from block to block to carry out maintenance is a major consideration in cell applications, especially in large prisons. Luminaires that incorporate removable gear trays not only save energy but ensure quick and easy upgrades, resulting in less disruption to prisoners and staff,

Technical Support

The MoJ have a stringent set of standards for prison cell design and certification. Standard cells are governed by STD/E/SPEC/021 and “Safer cells” by STD/E/SPEC/022. Both contain the requirement for lighting above the IK ratings detailed in EN 60068-2-75. Our luminaires are rated up to IK20, which is an impact equivalent to 250 joules of energy – 5 times more than an IK11 rated fitting (50 joules).

In “safer cell” applications, MoJ standards state that “the luminaires must be designed so as to reduce the potential for a prisoner to attach a ligature in order to attempt suicide”. We achieve this by minimising the aperture between the luminaire’s diffuser and body, using tamper proof screws and designing the body to be suitable for the application of anti-pick mastic during installation. A burns test is also required for “safer cell” accreditation. A naked flame, and abrasion from a 10mm coach bolt, is applied for up to 8 minutes to ensure the diffuser can’t be punctured.

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