About the Eurograde System
The European wide Eurograde system is a security numbering system that is applied to a number of high security safes that are specifically designed as a reliable solution to the need of homeowners and commercial businesses to safely store their cash and valuables. Eurograde safes are designed to guard against theft and burglary. All Eurograde safes must undergo a exhaustive series of testing before being certified that they can be granted EN1143 status,
How the Eurograde System Works
The EN1143 Eurograde system utilises the numbers zero to six and each safe is assigned a cash rating. The cash rating system is used to indicate to the customer the ability of the safe to resist physical attacks. A Eurograde 6 rating indicates that the safe offers the strongest resistance to attack, while a zero rating indicates that the safe offers the least resistance. Eurograde safes rated zero would therefore be more suitable for home use and not for storing large sums of cash or items of great value. This level of information is meant to help the customer select the right model according to their specific needs, and the level of security they may require for their cash or valuables.
How the Eurograde System is Assessed and the Meaning of each Eurograde
The zero to six Eurograde rating system is applied to safes that are designed to be theft and burglary resistant. The grade that is assigned to each safe indicates the amount of cash it was designed to protect. These safes have to first undergo various detailed testing that is conducted by national testing agencies such as VdS and ECBs, before the rating is applied. Once the test is done and the testing agencies have determined the resistance level of the safe a Eurograde rating is assigned. The resistance level is determined based on the length of time it takes to gain partial or full entry to the safe. A badge of certification from the testing agency can be found on or in the safe. The fire rating of 175 degrees for 30 minutes is also assigned to some safes although this is not part of the Eurograde EN1143 security test.
If the safe is to be insured, the insurance company will use the rating assigned to it to determine the coverage they will offer. The assigned Eurograde security cash ratings are as follows:
- Eurograde 0 - Cash rating of £6,000 and a valuables rating of £60,000.
- Eurograde 1 - Cash rating of £10,000 and a valuables rating of £100,000.
- Eurograde 2 - Cash rating of £17,500 and a valuables rating of £175,000.
- Eurograde 3 - Cash rating of £35,000 and a valuables rating of £350,000.
- Eurograde 4 - Cash rating of £60,000 and a valuables rating of £600,000.
- Eurograde 5 - Cash rating of £100,000 and a valuables rating of £1,000,000.
- Eurograde 6 - Cash rating of £150,000 and a valuables rating of £1,500,000.
As may be deciphered from the cash rating and the valuables rating, if you are going to store valuables as opposed to cash, simply multiply the cash rating by 10.
The grading system also helps to determine which safes are suitable to be used only in the home, and which can be used in both the home and a commercial setting. Eurograde safes that have a EN1143 certification with a Eurograde of 4, 5 or 6 have to be fitted with 2 locks rather than 1. This increases the security level if businesses entrust the holders of the 2 keys to two different employees. Thus ensuring that 2 key-holders are always present to enable the safe to be opened.
In addition it is important to note that all safes that weigh less than 1000kg must be securely bolted to the ground, otherwise the test certificate is null and void - as will be your insurance policy in the event that you have to make a claim.
Are all Eurograde Safes tested correctly?
There has been much discussion over the past year over this question. Many leading experts are concerned that some Eurograde safes do not meet the standard that is certified on their Eurograde certificate. Some are saying that, in independent re-testing, a Eurograde 3 safe tested in Eastern Europe barely met the standards for a Eurograde 1.
How can I be sure that the Eurograde safe I buy has been certified correctly?
The UK insurance industry is obviously very concerned and with the assistance of the AIS - the Association of Insurance Surveyors - has set about checking all European Test centres for competency.
That is why in recent months you will have noticed that many safes being offered for sale may have an AIS approved logo displayed with the safe. This gives the buyer the assurance that the safe in question has been tested correctly at an AIS approved testing authority such as VdS and ECB-s.
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