KASEY SILVIA – IN FORCE911 enables all employees to communicate directly with law enforcement during an emergency.
Greater New Bedford Regional Vocational Technical High School will soon have instantaneous, two-way access to local law enforcement thanks to the deployment of an advanced software tool that enables faculty, staff, and administrators to communicate directly with the local police department in the event of an emergency or security breach.
By partnering with Massachusetts-based In Force Technology LLC, the high school and the New Bedford Police Department will soon be equipped with the IN FORCE911 desktop and mobile software application. The software is proven to significantly reduce police response time to buildings and specific locations inside buildings during a critical event at a school while addressing the communications barrier that unfortunately exists during active shooter incidents.
It is a software tool that school officials, officers and the developers hope is never needed, however, the leadership of Greater New Bedford Regional Vocational Technical High School believes that this level of preparation and sophistication could provide a vital link between those inside a school building and those rushing to help when seconds count.
“Eliminating communication barriers between schools and local law enforcement is critical in the event of an emergency,” said In Force Technology CEO Brandon Flanagan. “Our software provides an immediate link to law enforcement that allows educators to contact them in seconds. It also has the potential to provide police with invaluable information, from the location of a suspect to the origin of the reported threat.”
The IN FORCE911 app empowers school staff with the ability to launch an alert in seconds from their desktop or mobile device, rather than minutes, with the current 911 system. Instead of waiting for calls to route through statewide or countywide dispatch systems, IN FORCE911 sends alerts and messages directly to the terminals and mobile devices of police officers in a specified area.
“We hope we never need to deploy the IN FORCE911 system, however, we must be realistic about potential school threats in the 21st century,” said James L. O’Brien, Supt./Director of Greater New Bedford Regional Vocational Technical High School.
“This system provides both GNBVT and the New Bedford Police with a valuable public safety tool that will connect our classroom teachers and staff directly with the police department, should the need ever arise.”
During an emergency, the alert is sent directly to the dispatch center, police cruisers and cell phones of officers with specific information, including the room of origin. It also opens a two-way chat dialogue, in real-time, allowing staff to communicate details of a threat or description of a suspect to first responders.
Additionally, first responders are provided access to floor plans, security camera feeds and other emergency information to help them plan the best response. IN FORCE911’s “Reverse Alert” feature also allows New Bedford law enforcement officials to immediately alert town and school officials of any imminent threats in their area, such as a police pursuit in progress, domestic custodial dispute, active robbery or severe weather alert. This eliminates the need for law enforcement to pick up the phone and call each building, in hopes they will lockdown.
“IN FORCE911 is a mechanism that will expedite police response to a critical event, to maximize the opportunity to preserve life,” said Chief of New Bedford Police, Joseph Cordeiro.
The software will be installed in all schools this winter, and educators will be trained accordingly. The software is also being installed at the New Bedford Police Department, where local police will also be trained to handle the new technology.
IN FORCE911 is used by hundreds of communities nationwide, including deployment in dozens of communities in New England.
By implementing the IN FORCE911 school safety software throughout its school and local law enforcement, Greater New Bedford Regional Vocational Technical High School leadership hope to empower school faculty, staff, and students, while working to save lives during an act of violence. Countless law enforcement training courses all teach the same lesson: time equals lives and every second counts during an emergency or active shooter incident.