As the Cannabis Industry grows, so does the need for proven security equipment and procedures.
One of the most important pieces of security equipment a cannabis business owner will own is a safe. The type of safe and configuration is as important as the functionality role it plays within an organization’s operation.
Remember, there are no wrong safes — just wrong safe applications.
For example, gun safes provide limited protection from heat and physical access, and a locked file cabinet is only designed to keep information confidential. Both of these devices are not designed for physical attack and both are not considered a commercial defense product against even an amateur level criminal.
Wikipedia defines a safe as a secure lockable box used for securing valuable objects against theft and/or damage from fire. To understand a safe you must first understand why the UL (Underwriters Laboratories) and TL (Tool and Lock) rating is important.
UL has been testing and rating products for more than 100 years, and evaluates nearly 20,000 products annually. The UL rating is an indicator of product quality and certification of safety.
TL rated safes are combination lock safes that offer protection against combinations of mechanical, electrical, and cutting tools. Safes with a TL rating will resist abuse for a varying amount of time, depending on which classification tier they fall under, from picking tools to hand tools, mechanical or electrical tools, grinding points, carbide drills, pressure-applying devices, cutting wheels, power saws and impact tools.
Some levels of safes can even withstand welding and cutting torch abuse at certain levels. Both the UL and TL ratings are important to your insurance company and therefore should be to you as well.
There are three main areas a cannabis business owner should focus on when reviewing their safe or vault needs. These are cash, cannabis during business hours, and cannabis bulk storage. Let’s review the top safes for each specific cannabis need:
1 — Best safe for cash control: CacheSystem
This safe is ideal for a cash-intensive cannabis business. The CacheSystem safe provides cash security and greater employee accountability through an audit trail that connects each transaction to a registered user.
The CacheSystem will collect, identify, secure and count cash as well as validate the funds. The CacheSystem integrates with software, allowing the user to access and evaluate transaction data and provide real-time comparisons with POS activity.
2 — Best Safe for Cannabis: Rolland Safe & Lock – Drawer Management System (DMS)
The DMS safe is one of the first safes to be specifically designed for the Cannabis Industry.
The DMS can trace it’s origin to the Pawnsafe which is currently used in most pawn shops nationwide and has been proven to reduce and deter robberies over the last 15 years.The DMS safe was designed by Rolland Safe & Lock and incorporates a six-sided composite construction with a steel and ceramic matrix on all six sides of the safe.
This unified construction achieves the highest degree of burglary protection in its class. Individual drawers inside the safe allow the owner to customize their cannabis inventory accessibility. Each drawer is controlled by time, date, and person with audit capabilities that tell you who has accessed an individual drawer.
These time delay drawers have proven to reduce armed robberies in high risk businesses nationwide by reducing the access to the merchandise being protected in the safe.
3 — Best mobile storage for cannabis during business hours: DMS Cart
The DMS cart has seven locking drawers which are designed to provide safe and convenient storage.
The seven lockable drawers have the capacity for 114 separate compartments and can store up to 440 lbs. of cannabis and cannabis products.
If needed the DMS Cart can be moved to various locations in the dispensary for improved customer service.
4 — Best safe or vault for bulk cannabis storage: TL30 Classified safe.
A TL 30×6 V12 safe is certified by Underwriters Laboratories to protect against criminal attacks on all 6 sides of the safe.
The TL 30×6 V12 joins steel, ceramic and composite materials to make up the robust structure of the safe.
The structure of the safe is reinforced with Z Bar technology on all 6 sides of the safe to further protect from a criminal’s tool attack.
Cannabis product stored in a vault
Cannabis should be stored in a UL Rated Class 1 or higher modular vault. The interior can be atmospherically controlled through optional HVAC ports.
Be sure a UL Rated Class 1 or higher modular vault door is used for the entrance in order to maintain the UL class rating for burglary and fire.
These are just a few suggestions of the many safes and vaults that are available to a cannabis business owner. If you do your research you will see that there is more to a safe than you originally thought and choosing the right safe for the right business need can spell the difference between being profitable or going out of business.
As a cannabis business owner, you need to ask yourself — Would your business be able to survive a complete loss of your cannabis and cash in the event of a robbery or break in? Will your customers return after a violent robbery occurred at your location?
Remember, be safe and be profitable.
Tony Gallo is the Managing Partner for Sapphire Risk Advisory Group www.sapphirerisk.com with over 30 years in the Loss Prevention, Audit, Safety, and Risk/Emergency Management fields. He is a published author on cannabis security and has spoken at numerous cannabis business conferences across the country. Tony is considered one of the leading authorities on cannabis security programs.
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