One of the reasons why a home, business or car owner may decide to place a film on their windows is to help make the window glass more resilient against shattering. If the glass window is struck and breaks, instead of shattering into flying pieces the shatterproof window film keeps the pieces together.
Shatterproof window film can help protect windows from anything that may cause them to shatter – an intruder’s advances, a flyaway baseball, debris flying from a storm, or a car accident. And for states prone to earthquakes, shatterproof window film can help combat injuries due to broken glass. In fact, according to the American Red Cross, flying glass is one of the main causes of earthquake-related injuries and fatalities.
So it seems that applying a shatterproof window film to windows of homes, businesses, and cars would make sense – who wouldn’t want the extra protection it offers, along with the additional benefits of UV protection and added privacy?
However, while shatterproof window film may potentially help keep those inside a building or car safer, what about in cases when someone on the outside needs to get to the inside? For instance, if an emergency responder such as a firefighter needs to get inside a home to save someone, does the shatterproof window film make it harder for them to break through the window to get inside?
This question was also asked by SPAWAR (Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command) Systems Center Charleston after they conducted a survey of information on shatterproof window film and how it could help government facilities protect themselves against terror attacks. According to the article “Shatter Resistant Window Film – SAVER Summary” (https://www.rkb.us/saver/download.cfm?id=3217), a study was performed by Hinman Consulting Engineers, Inc. and the San Jose Fire Department to find out just how difficult it would be for firefighters to break through windows coated with shatterproof window film. They found while firefighters were able to enter all the windows in the study using conventional firefighting tools commonly carried by firefighters in the United States, times going in and coming out were affected. Due to this study, the General Services Administration (GSA) recommends emergency responders be made aware of the effects that shatterproof window film can have, and recommends they always assume a building has some type of film on it.