SOURCE: School Safety Summit

School Safety Summit

July 25, 2011 08:05 ET

3DTV Campus Safety Special Shows How Students in Danger Save Lives

LOS ANGELES, CA--(Marketwire - Jul 25, 2011) - School Safety Summit (www.SchoolSafetySummit.org) announced today that an upcoming Summit Report, produced in stereoscopic 3D for 3DTV, will explore a breakthrough in school safety that allows students in an emergency to speak directly with rescue teams dispatched to the scene.

The television special will feature Colorado State University at Pueblo, the first campus worldwide to provide 2-way radio interoperability between students and public safety during a school crisis. The new system is aligned with Colorado Senate Bill 11-173, Interoperable Communications in Schools, introduced by State Senator Steve King and signed into law in June.

Jason Turner, CSU-Pueblo Director of Environmental Safety, gave show producer John Simmons a first look at the system before reviewing shooting locations where 3D production would heighten realism and intensify drama in scenes of students acting under stress.

According to Turner, the university's new approach to school safety provides first responders with more accurate timely information about a crisis directly from those involved, allowing responders to put into service exactly the right resources needed. Otherwise, with limited information, incoming response agencies are likely to bring more vehicles, equipment, and personnel than needed -- making these resources unavailable for other emergencies in Pueblo.

High visibility and ease-of-use were key factors in the design of the system, called SAFECOM 911, co-developed by the university and SchoolSAFE Communications (www.SchoolSAFECOM.org). In time for the new school year, Turner will activate a next-generation school safety network starting with eleven strategic outdoor locations on campus. At each location he is installing a 10-foot-tall emergency 2-way radio call box tower. One press of a button at the call box puts the caller on a fast track to safety.

"We had an antiquated call box system that required a separate receiver at dispatch," explained Turner. "That's all gone. We're moving light years ahead now. After developing many ways for campus security to talk to the campus, we now also have a superior way for the campus to talk to us."

Beacons at the top of the new call box towers make them easy to locate. Students, staff, or visitors needing help can walk up to the nearest call box and have immediate access to the Sheriff's Department's dispatch channel.

Within seconds, if needed, dispatch can bridge the caller with law enforcement, fire, medical, or emergency management, and virtually any first responder in Colorado. This capability allows the caller to provide further information or updates, or to receive instructions on how to save a life, avoid personal injury, or reduce property damage.

Turner encourages officials from other campuses to visit him at CSU-Pueblo to see how rapidly the network can be installed.

"These are solar units so we don't have to trench up the whole campus and we can be environmentally friendly," Turner noted. Each tower has battery backup for 48 hours, and if the battery gets low the call box notifies campus maintenance.

SchoolSAFE Communications has turned to noted school architect Alan Ford to help further develop the system. New design goals include improved wayfinding, defining a space around the call boxes for individuals or groups, and incorporating security cameras and digital signage at each tower location.

For more information about this project and the community partners involved, visit SchoolSafetySummit.org.

Contact Information

  • Contacts:
    Senator Steve King
    Colorado State Capitol
    200 East Colfax Avenue
    Denver, CO 80203
    Email Contact

    John Simmons
    Producer
    9107 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 450
    Beverly Hills, CA 90210
    310-272-7171
    Email Contact