Everything you need to know about panic alarm systems for schools.
Panic button. Did you just conjure up images of a bank robbery and a panicked teller pushing the silent alarm button? You’re not alone. Movies and tv shows have been depicting bank robberies since the Golden Age of movies. What the movies don’t show is that a panic alarm can be more than just a stationary button. Here is a helpful guide to panic alarm systems for schools.
History of Panic Alarms
The invention of the panic alarm, like many technological advancements, does not have a single attributed inventor. Rather, it evolved over time through innovations in security systems and emergency response mechanisms.
Specific inventors or companies may have contributed to the refinement and popularization of panic alarms, especially in commercial and industrial settings. These systems likely evolved from early forms of alarm systems used in banks, businesses and other high-security environments.
Panic Alarms for Schools
The ultimate goal of a panic button is to save lives by deploying help as quickly as possible. This help may or may not include first responders depending on the situation and your protocols. With advancements in technology, a panic button can be what you want it to be. It doesn’t have to be a hidden button under a desk, but it can be that.
Common Types of Panic Alarm Systems Include:
- Physical Emergency Button – could be placed on a wall or under a desk and more.
- A Mobile App – accessible anywhere you have a signal
- Desktop Icon – visible and easily clickable from your desk
- Wearable Panic Buttons
- Bracelet / wrist options
- Anywhere you can clip it
Do you need Audible or Silent Panic Alarms for Schools?
Protocols for school and other building safety plans necessitate varying responses, whether silent or audible. By utilizing a Mass Notification System, the protocols and guidelines implemented by your school for diverse daily scenarios and crisis situations can be programmed accordingly. This ensures that the panic alarm responds as required for the specific situation.
Audible Panic Alarms
These alarms emit a loud sound when activated, alerting people nearby to the presence of an emergency or threat. Audible panic alarms are commonly used in public spaces, buildings, and vehicles to attract attention and summon help. A fire alarm pull is an example of an audible alarm.
Silent Panic Alarms
Silent panic alarms are designed to alert authorities and/or security personnel discreetly. These alarms operate without producing any local audible noise, ensuring that potential perpetrators remain unaware. Instead, they transmit signals directly to monitoring centers or designated responders, enabling a prompt and covert response.
The best response is the one that works for the scenario. A flexible, customizable Mass Notification System like the one from Layered Solutions allows for global acceptance of triggers or input (agnostic).
What are some Common School Scenarios Where a Panic Alarm Might Be Needed?
- Active Shooter
- Unruly Parent
- Medical Emergency
- Hostile Student
- Unknown Visitor
Panic Alarms & Security Software Integrations
Regardless of the type of panic alarm, panic alarms can be integrated into other school security systems like a visitor management system. Perhaps a family from your school is dealing with a custody dispute. By integrating into your visitor management system, a panic alarm can be automatically triggered to send help when the person in conflict is inside school property.
Aylssa’s Law & Panic Alarms
Alyssa’s Law is a legislative measure requiring all public schools to have a panic alert system installed that is linked directly to law enforcement. Named after Alyssa Alhadeff, a victim of the Parkland school shooting in 2018, the law aims to improve response times to potential threats and enhance school safety protocols. Learn more about Alyssa’s Law legislation, requirements and where it’s passed.
Layered Solutions offers a customized approach to mass notification systems. Our skilled engineers tailor our solutions like school panic alarms to seamlessly integrate with your existing hardware and crisis protocols. The response you need to help break up a fight is most likely not the same response needed in a medical emergency or active shooter situation.