There is always fear, alarm, and panic in any active shooter crisis. Fear for yourself and those around you, alarm at the situation, and panic about what to do to save yourself. Active shooters are becoming more common by the day according to the Gun Violence Archive, which has been studying the harsh trajectory of gun violence in the United States.
Due to this terrible pattern in the US, it’s important to implement safety regulations in case of a life-ending scenario. Lockdown regulations like weekly lockdown drills, protocols, and locking systems have been placed in various schools to prevent an active shooter from causing harm. An automatic lockdown system is the most effective prevention method against an active shooter.
What is an Active Shooter?
An active shooter is a predator-type mass murderer marked by scale, randomness, and rapidity. According to the United States Department of Homeland Security, an active shooter is “an individual actively engaged in killing or attempting to kill people in a populated area. There is typically no pattern or method to an active shooter crisis, and they use semi-automatic firearms rather than a handgun or single-shot rifles. While any type of gun is deadly, these kinds of firearms automatically load another round after being shot for subsequent firing, increasing the lethality of the situation.
There have been many cases of active shooters this past year alone, and they continue to go up every year. Due to the severity of cases, schools have increased prevention methods in case of an active shooter scenario. Schools have implemented more lockdown drills, training courses, and armed security guards to minimize casualties. However, an automatic lockdown system is one of the best prevention methods to de-escalate an active shooter situation and preserve life at the school.
What Are Automatic Lockdown Systems?
Automatic lockdown systems are designed to close and lock all doors at a school against a potential threat. Each lockdown system is unique and customized to the school. This advanced security solution is made to secure any facility during an emergency and acts to decrease the potential for casualties extenuating from an active shooter crisis.
These systems are primarily used for internal doors when an active shooter has breached an external door, and alerts the faculty that there is danger in the school. In most cases, these can be controlled via a control panel, key fobs, phone apps, and manual lock. This kind of system can save countless lives, as it prevents anyone from going in or out before the police arrive.
How It Works
Like any automatic locking system, the automatic lockdown system is triggered by a sensor during a breach through the external doors. Upon the breach at the external doors, it triggers a lockdown that locks everything. At this time, an administrator in the main office has access to the control panel showing where the breach is and the connecting doors that have been locked internally.
The lockdown system is monitored and controlled within the main office of the school. This operating system has a control panel that locks and unlocks the doors, has CCTV to monitor activity, sounds alerts over a PA, and contacts the police.
The system also allows for communication between the teachers within each individual classroom. The lockdown system can be controlled by an integrated control panel to lock all doors, or individually within each room by phone app, key fob, or egress button.
Overall, the best way to prevent casualties is to be proactive. This includes conducting regular active shooter drills, extensive training on lockdown system usage, and keeping external doors locked and checked by security personnel at all times except when the school is opening or being let out. By exercising these measures, the students and faculty of these schools will be safe during an active shooter threat.