According to the New England Journal of Medicine, in 2018 15% of childhood deaths in the US were attributed to firearm-related incidents, making it the second leading cause of death in children. In 2020 alone, there have been 44 incidents of gunfire on school grounds, resulting in 12 deaths and 20 injuries. Among these incidents, four high schools and six post-secondary education institutions became crime scenes for murder. Three elementary schools have been tainted with injuries from these gunfire incidents. In 2019, the US saw 25 gunfire related incidents with 8 people killed and 43 people injured.
As gun violence and mass shootings grow more frequent in many different communities, law enforcement and security professionals have worked quickly to adapt gunshot detection technology to a variety of situations, including schools, office buildings, government buildings, hospitals, and more.
How can gunshot detection technology benefit school safety?
Schools are picking up this technology to improve safety on campus and trying to mitigate the risks for their students by staying proactive. In the event of a gunshot being detected, the system will notify administrators and put in a call to 9−1−1 automatically alerting of a problem. Through this automated notification process, students and staff members can focus on protecting themselves and locking down the school until police arrive.
The major benefits of this early gunshot detection technology are numerous:
● Gunshot detection technology provides reliable and accurate information about when and where a firearm has been discharged so further investigation can be conducted.
● Gunshot detection technology can be programmed to distinguish a gunshot from a vehicle backfiring or other loud noises. By registering that gunshot, the system will identify the location where the gunshot came from by using sensors that ping off the sound waves. What does this mean for safety? Identifying where the gunshot took place quicker can help establish where a suspect may be. And it gives police a starting point to look for the suspect if they took off. With this information staff and administrators can make an informed decision to act, such as running and hiding from danger, or avoiding certain areas of a building or campus.
● Gunshot detection technology decreases response time to a firearm incident. By notifying law enforcement or emergency services right away, this takes the responsibility of notifying police of dangerous situations out of the witness’s hands. Sometimes in these situations, so much can happen that precious time is lost due to the overwhelming emotions during high risk situations. Even if it takes a minute for somebody to call 9−1−1, this minute can be valuable. Gunshot Detection Technology alerts law enforcement and emergency services immediately as it detects the shot, so proper services are dispatched to the scene.
● Gunshot detection paired with access control or other automated security solutions works best. Gunshot detection technology can be added to your current security system as another layer of security. For example, if you pair gunshot detection with an access control system, you can automatically lock down the entire building to keep intruders from coming inside the building or a suspected shooter from leaving the building. In a school setting, this can lock classroom doors which allows for students to seek shelter. Sending your building into lockdown mode can provide formidable deterrents to active shooters.
● Gunshot detection systems can trigger automated announcements to employees or the general public of the surrounding areas. This level of notification can bring awareness to the severity of the situation while giving instructions on how to evade danger. In a school setting, these announcements can reach all students no matter their location, which will give them the advantage of time on their side when seeking safety.
How Can Bates Security Help You?
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