Bomb Threats Rise Dramatically at Education Facilities

  December 15, 2016

By Dave Lubach

Bomb threats are significantly on the rise at educational facilities across the country, according to study from the Educator’s School Safety Network (ESSN).

In the 2015-16 school year, U.S. schools experienced 1,267 bomb threats, a whopping increase of 106 percent compared to the same time period in 2012-13. Click here to view to the research and the complete report.

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ESSN is a national-non-profit school safety organization that compiled information on bomb incidents in America’s schools to determine the scope and severity of the issue. The authors of the report, Amy Klinger and Amanda Klinger of ESSN say the increase in threats is unprecedented and alarming.

“Based on our analysis of bomb threat data and trends, the sobering reality is that an explosive device will be detonated in an American school with significant consequences, and we must be ready,” the report read.

Highlighted information from the report:
• During the 2015-16 school year, Massachusetts had 10.7 percent of all bomb threats, followed by Ohio at 7.6% and New Jersey with 6.8%.
• In the past school year, every U.S. state and several territories experienced at least one bomb threat.
• K-12 education facilities account for 99 percent of all education facility bomb threats. Elementary schools (44%) lead the breakdown followed by high schools (35%) and middle schools (20%).
• Called-in threats (53 percent) and notes found inside the schools (32%) account for 85% of the delivery method of bomb threats.
• Evacuation (79 percent) is the most frequently used response to a bomb threat.

The skills that maintenance and engineering managers should learn to correctly handle a bomb threat include:
• Have a functional understanding of explosive devices, sheltering distances, and the capabilities of explosive devices
• Understand practices and protocols that emergency responders will employ
• Appropriately assess level and validity of threats
• Identify and analyze pre-attack indicators
• Have protocols in place to prevent future threats and copycat incidents
• Have capability to conduct appropriate and effective searches of school facilities.

This Quick Read was submitted by Dave Lubach, Associate Editor of Facility Maintenance Decisions, dave.lubach@tradepressmedia.com.


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