You may remember a guest blog post from Lieutenant Joseph Hendry, who is with the Kent State University Police Department and the ALICE Training Institute – if you didn’t see it, here it is! Lt. Hendry has an article in this month’s Campus Safety Magazine, on the challenges created by using barricade devices for classroom lockdown. Here’s my favorite part… 🙂
Door Barricades Prove Challenging for First Responders
Most devices are unable to be removed from outside the door by law enforcement, or require special tools or knowledge for removal. Floor bolt holes are easily compromised by daily activity and requiring them to be cleaned out daily by staff is not a fail-safe solution to this problem. Not only can these devices be used against us by active threats or terrorists, they could also easily be utilized by individuals committing sexual or physical assaults in the classroom. These are just a few of the observed problems with secondary locking devices.
The real solution should be based on a long term strategy involving training and infrastructure. In much the same way building and fire codes were developed, we now need to further enhance those codes to meet changing needs. The fire codes nationally should fit right in with development of terrorism or active threat building codes, complementing one another. Too many want to throw out the fire codes to make way for secondary locking devices.
Solving the problem should be rooted in enhancing current building codes and requiring better doors and internal locking systems. Several State Fire Marshals have already released documents showing approved doors and internal locking systems that do not violate fire and building codes from reputable door companies.