Sunday, September 19, 2021

U.S. Capitol Windows, Missing Key Security Feature, Give Way During Mob Attack

When the mob that entered the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 to protest the result of the presidential election they did so, in part, by entering through the building’s windows.

Many of the windows were protected by a security window film that was installed after the terrorist attacks on 9/11. The fragment retention window film, which also was installed on all the House of Representative and Library of Congress buildings, is effective in holding glass in place during explosions and attempts to break the glass by building intruders.

However, a second component of the window safety system, the installation of a wet glaze attachment system, was not in place at the Capitol building. As a result, while the glass withstood attempts by the mob to shatter it, the window frames were dislodged, allowing the intruders to enter the Capitol. Had the wet glaze attachment system been in place it would have been far more difficult for the mob to enter the Capitol building.

For years, windows in numerous government buildings in Washington and elsewhere in the country have been protected by security window film installation with a wet glaze attachment system.

More recently, after a series of intrusions and attacks in schools around the country, many school systems have had security window film with a wet glaze attachment system installed on their first-floor windows and doorways to help keep out armed intruders.

It was following the Oklahoma City bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in 1995, during which many of the dead and injured were the result of flying glass shards, that window film manufacturers turned their efforts to produce a film that would hold the glass in place during explosions and other unforeseen catastrophic events.

The result was the creation of security window films, also known as fragment retention window films, shatter-resistant window films, and safety and security window films. These films quickly became popular with architects and engineers in the federal government and owners of large office buildings.

In the aftermath of the attack on the U.S. Capitol, there are warnings of additional, possibly violent events in Washington and elsewhere in the country. And once again government officials and building owners in urban areas will be looking at ways to protect their buildings and their employees.

Certainly, the installation of security window film with a wet glaze attachment system is one proven way to protect a building. The best way to explore this option is to find a reputable and experienced security window film installation company with considerable experience and expertise in the installation of fragment retention film as well as wet glaze attachment systems.

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