Prison, Jail, and Correctional Facility LED Lighting

Prison, Jail, and Correctional Facility LED Lighting

Prisons, jails, and other detention facilities face unique challenges with maintaining a safe and efficient environment for inmates and staff. Lighting solutions and managing utility costs can often fall by the wayside but can have a huge effect on the everyday lives of staff and inmates.

Prison management and security staff require fast responding lights that provide adequate illumination in different environments. LED lamps are versatile in a variety of applications and greatly reduce utility and maintenance costs.

Problems Detention Centers Face with Lighting

Light Responsiveness

When an emergency occurs prison staff needs full illumination for the area in a moment’s notice. Traditional fluorescent or halide lamps can take 5-20 minutes to warm up to their full light potential. This delay puts more hazards in the way of prison, compromising the objectives of maintaining a safe environment.

Lighting Illumination Quality

Light Brightness – Lumens

Traditional light bulbs don’t always burn at a consistent lumen level, meaning that when they do warm up to full illumination the facility may still be dimly lit. As traditional bulbs age, their fuel sources deplete and they no longer provide their full illumination. Traditional lamps also waste energy by giving off a 360° beam angle rather than having a more focus light beam, this causes a lot of light dispersal inefficiency.

Light Color and Detail Illumination

In detention centers, when it comes to visibility it is imperative that the environments and the objects within are well lit with accurate details and colors. The problem with many traditional lamps is that they have a narrow range of bulb correlated color temperature in the yellow light range. In some situations, yellow light is the best solution, but blue/white light is often preferential to give accurate illumination. Detention center staff need assurance that details are visible when conducting bed, room, and security checks. Poor light color can compromise these security checks and the safety of facilities.

Lighting color also has massive effects on the energy and moods of the staff and inmates. Fluorescent light bulbs are especially notorious for causing headaches and mood swings.

Light Bulb Lifespan

One of the biggest disadvantages of halide, high-pressure sodium, and fluorescent is their lifespan. These bulbs only burn for 6,000 to 24,000 hours. In a facility that runs lights for 18 to 24 hours per daylight bulbs require frequent changing and maintenance. The costs from materials and maintenance staff can be exponentially higher with traditional lamps compared to LEDs.

Why Choose LED Lamps for Prison and Detention Center Lighting

LED lamps address many of the lighting problems that correctional facilities experience. With LED lights detention centers can ensure that lighting is available quickly and that those lights will fully and accurately illuminate the environment.

LED Bulb Response Time

When LED lights are turned on they take seconds to reach full illumination compared to the 5 – 20 minutes that other bulbs take to warm up. So when a staff member needs a room quickly lit up they don’t have to be concerned with time, or if there is an emergency in the detention facility the automatic lights won’t take extra time to illuminate the area and make a safe environment for staff and inmates.

LED Light Quality

LEDs come in a wide range of lumens (brightness) and color (correlated color temperature) so detention centers can customize the mix of lamps that they need for different applications within their facility. For outdoor and parking lot lighting it is best to have a high brightness lamp with a blue light color 6000k+. Interior lighting differs depending on the function of the room; warm light is best for improving the moods of persons in the area and cool lighting is best for object accuracy when lit. LED lamps also come in directional configurations allowing light to be focused on the right area without wasting efficiency.

LED Efficiency and Detention Center Maintenance Costs

While 25,000 hours is about the highest lifespan for other light bulbs, LED lamps last for 50,000 hours. Since lights in prisons are on from dusk till dawn, the chosen lighting system should be very energy efficient. Maintenance to change lamps is also an issue. With LED lights detention centers can cut thousands off of their utility costs and the personnel costs for maintenance.

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