5 Lessons We Learned From Parkland

One of the deadliest mass shootings in the United States took place on February 14, 2018.

During the horrendous attack at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, 17 innocent teenagers were killed and another 17 were injured. Nikolas Cruz, 19-year old former student, walked into Stoneman Douglas High School with an AR-15 style semi-automatic rifle and opened fire at students and teachers. The shooting lasted 5 minutes and 32 seconds.

Cruz was first dropped off by an Uber and walked right into Building 12 stairwell with a black rifle bag. Once he entered, he took his time in the stairwell to get set up, warned a student things were about to get ugly, then began shooting. He fired into multiple classrooms on the first floor, set off the school’s fire alarm, and proceeded to the next stairwell up to the second floor where he found the hallway empty.

By this point, the third floor of the building was following a fire drill procedure, not knowing there is an active shooter present. When Cruz reached the top floor, some students and teachers did not make it back into the classroom in time, leaving them as open targets. After his 6 minute long rampage through Building 12, he discarded his gun and fled the scene.

Stoneman Douglas High School had a school resource officer, Deputy Scot Peterson on staff to protect the students, but because he did not know where the gunfire was coming from, he did not go into the correct building. When he finally discovered which building the shooter was in, he did not go inside. Instead, he ordered people to not enter the building and blocked off an intersection.

Once Florida law enforcement arrived, Cruz had already left the building. He walked right off Stoneman Douglas campus and into a nearby Walmart, he purchased a soda at a restaurant then sat at McDonald’s before he left and was stopped by the police in a neighborhood 2 miles away from the school.

Prevention is critical in emergency situations like this. The information gap between the school administrators and first responders of not knowing where Nicolas Cruz was on their campus cost multiple lives. After examining the days events, it is clear that the school district was unprepared for a crisis like this to happen. If they had the KnowWhere Campus Safety System in place, they might have been able to stop this whole incident. Let's look at some of the ways this could have been prevented:

5 Critical Points of Intervention:

1. Threat Detection

When Nicolas Cruz entered into Building 12, he waited for minutes in the stairwell before starting his attack. Because there was nothing to detect him as a threat in the building, to stop him. With our system, the KW-PODS would have detected the weapon Cruz had and immediately triggered an alert to the SRO. The SRO would have the exact location and visual on the shooter while he orders a school lockdown and notifies the police.

2. Police Response

When the police were notified of possible gunshots on campus, there was no actionable information for them to have. With our system, the KW-PODS would autonomously contact the police. They would provide a 2D and 3D layout of the school, a visual of Cruz, 2D real-time tracking of him, put the school in lock down, and identify where people are on campus.

3. Communication

When Cruz pulled the fire alarm, 3,000 students started evacuating the classrooms. They were not aware of the Code Red and were following only procedures. With our system, the KW-PODS put the school in lock down, informing students of the threat and the location over the speaker. SROs also have the ability to tell specific areas to run, hide, or fight. While police authorities also have direct communication into the school.

4. Threat Tracking

Cruz evaded police during the student evacuation, blending into the crowd and allowing for an easy exit off-campus. With our system, the KW-PODS would have identified Cruz and tracked him throughout the school. Police would be able to enter the building sooner and apprehend him immediately.

5. Injury Management

Because of the delay on the surveillance video, the police thought Cruz was still in the building. As they continued to search for him, injured students were left waiting to be relieved. With our system, the KW-PODS would have led the police to Cruz sooner, identified injury priority areas and shown where people were in the building in real-time.

We began Drift Net Securities in response to this horrendous attack that happened in Parkland and developed the KnowWhere Campus System to stop threats before a situation can escalate. Using artificial intelligence, our system can detect weapons, concealed carry guns, and many other threats that can cause harm on your campus: all in real-time. Our mission is to provide the most innovative technology to make our lives and communities safer. Contact us to learn more about our system and access a free trial.

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