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Schools are pouring a flood of money on safety products. Yet, according to a new report from Parks Associates, there hasn’t been enough thought about how products can be leveraged to better respond to violence in schools.

The market research and consulting company in Edison, Texas, noted in its report that schools have promoted access control practices, the use of faculty badges and security cameras for nearly 20 years, but the measure does not adequately secure schools. have found. violence.

Citing data from the School Survey on Crime and Safety, the report said that during the 2017-18 school year, 71% of schools experienced at least one violent incident, and 21% reported one serious violent incident. experienced. The National Center for Education Statistics released similar figures for the 2019-20 school year.

“Although these data points are from a variety of organizations, the numbers show a 4% increase in serious violent incidents even though the use of surveillance cameras, access control and other security systems on school grounds is at an all-time high,” wrote author Parks . President and CMO Elizabeth Parks and research intern August Ward.

“Schools are spending a lot of money on security products, but they don’t do a great job at thinking through feedback,” said Mark Hatton, CEO of MutualLink, a provider of interoperability security solutions based in Wallingford, Conn.

“All of those security products are produced proof after the fact. They haven’t been coordinated and considered for response,” Hatton told TechNewsWorld.

better access control

The report notes that evolving school safety technology is providing increasingly efficient support to first responders.

“Advanced technologies increasingly give first responders a lot of additional information about what’s happening in the environment without relying on humans to relay that information,” Parks told TechNewsWorld.

The report noted that access control systems allow people to skip the step of tracking the closing of doors. Access control systems enable people to control whether the doors have been locked or not.

In the Uvalde tragedy, it added, a school door that would normally have been closed was left open, allowing gunmen to enter. A machine locking system may have prevented this.

The report indicated that advances in artificial intelligence and machine learning could also accelerate reaction times. AI and ML can identify suspicious activity, identify dangerous objects, recognize patterns and organize data and evidence, it continued. These are powerful capabilities to improve safety and response times, especially when this can happen without the assistance of an operator.

However, Parks said that automation should not be a substitute for human intervention. “Technology and automation should be used not to replace humans but to provide better information to humans so that humans can respond better,” she said.

zeroeyes technology

Dot Blackwell, the superintendent of Vassar Public Schools in Vassar, Michigan, however, believes that school safety technology is less effective at addressing violence problems when it relies on staff for monitoring or management.

Vassar Public School, 45 minutes from Oxford High School, the scene of a mass shooting in November 2021 that killed four students, and injured seven people, including a teacher, recently installed a new security system called ZeroEasy. was done.

ZeroEyes works with existing video surveillance systems at a school to identify firearms. It can alert first responders of a potential threat in three to five seconds – even though the image of a threat must pass human muster before it can be forwarded to the appropriate authorities.

Blackwell told TechNewsWorld, “ZeroEyes Technology is the first product our school district has discovered, offering an innovative way to monitor activities in our buildings and our parking lots that could give us precious minutes to save lives.” Is.”

press panic button

Another technology cited in the report is panic devices that enable emergencies to be reported without explanation. In some respects, technology is more efficient and effective than humans.

MutualLink can amplify information sent to first responders before tools such as panic buttons.

“When you press a panic button, in about four seconds, the school’s floor plan along with the camera feed is sent to the police,” Hatton explained.

“The fact is, if someone wants to cause harm, they are likely to enter the school,” he said.

“When security products designed to keep intruders out of school fail to do so, MutuLink may immediately share information about those products with police.”

“MutualLink converts day-to-day security products into effective response products,” Hatton said.

Technologies need to work together

The report also referred to the Personal Emergency Response System. It explained that the PEAR device enables school staff with just the press of a button to contact first responders when needed. According to the report, the technology can improve and simplify response times, which is one of the most important problems with threats operating on campuses.

One of the benefits of the devices mentioned in the report is their low cost, which is why they are being used more frequently in schools. However, one challenge with this technology and security systems, in general, are false alarms.

According to Parks’ research, nearly half of security owners say their security system triggers too many false alarms. Additionally, 62% of home security owners report experiencing one false alarm in the past 12 months, and about 10% report having experienced more than five false alarms in the past year.

The report states that a number of technologies must work together to effectively secure a school. Every school has a different layout, population size, and funding, which means that one set of security solutions will not work for everyone. Every state, it continued, has different rules and grant systems for their schools, which in turn makes it difficult to integrate security companies nationwide.

Time will tell how these new technologies perform, Parks’ report predicts. School safety technology is beneficial, but currently, more metrics are needed to evaluate the technology used for school safety. It noted that the technology cannot guarantee flawless defense against security breaches and threats. Nevertheless, it can help reduce the likelihood of a dangerous situation occurring and create efficiency in emergency response.

“How can we stop school violence is a million dollar question,” Parks said. “I don’t know if we have the answer yet. But any threat to the safety of children in school is the best answer we can have.”

Last mile delivery of products ordered online is a serious problem for merchants and consumers, and it is even more challenging for food retailers.

The innovative Phononic EV could drive a new solution to efficiently and sustainably deliver groceries, rivaling Amazon’s planned aerial drone package delivery system.

Phononic unveiled its electronic vehicle for permanent last mile delivery on August 31 at the Home Delivery World Show in Philadelphia. At this point, the vehicle is a functional proof of concept. It is not available in the market.

What happens next is in Sortimo’s hands. The two companies formed a partnership to fit the Ford E-Transit (Extended Edition) with reconfigurable shelving to create cold chain transport vans for grocery retailers without the risk of food spoilage on e-commerce Can go

Phononic’s new approach integrates thermoelectric-based cooling solutions into customized shelving. This partnership created the first truly sustainable cold chain grocery transport by turning an electric van into an all-electric tri-temperature vehicle.

The electric vehicle is free from environmentally harmful, artificially produced refrigerants called hydrofluorocarbons, or HFCs.

“We can see the potential for customer delivery by using EV vans equipped with Phononic technology for tri-temperature cooling in 2023,” Dana Krug, Phononic’s vice president and general manager, told TechNewsworld.

a peak inside

Phononic’s first electric vehicle is equipped with the company’s Activity Cooled Tote. Sortimo’s customized FR5 and SR5 van shelving is designed to be an optimal and efficient way to store chilled, frozen and general merchandise orders in one vehicle during grocery delivery.

With the SR5, shelves can be configured to fit any location to optimize payload and cargo capacity. As online ordering has become the preferred choice of consumers, all-electric technology can help grocers to grow their last-mile delivery fleet in a sustainable manner.

Phonetic Temperature Controlled Totes for Food Safety

image credit: phononic


According to Krug, it provides increased customer loyalty and access to same-day delivery while driving a stronger ROI with increased levels of consistency. Its technology is naturally a great mobile platform.

The delivery van uses proprietary solid-state cooling technology instead of existing compressor-based mechanical systems that can fail. Its system’s compact heat pump allows for greater capacity in a single space. Controls reduce energy requirements.

on demand heating up

Market studies show that the demand for online food purchase is increasing rapidly. Online grocery ordering and delivery is here to stay, making last mile execution even more important.

“Maintaining the right temperature for a range of food – frozen, chilled and ambient – ​​is forcing grocery retailers to rethink their entire operations,” Krug observed.

“As online ordering becomes the preferred choice for consumers, all-electric technology can help grocers grow their last mile delivery fleet in a more sustainable manner, driving a stronger ROI with improved customer loyalty and increased levels It provides access to same-day delivery and stability,” he said.

As the demand for grocery deliveries increases, the need for more vehicles to perform those deliveries will increase. Industry reports estimate the number of delivery vehicles on the road to increase by 36% by 2030.

“We give retailers the option of using electric vehicles that can be connected to our solid-state cooling technology. This reduces the total global warming potential (GWP) rather than compounding the problem with combustion-based vehicles fitted with compressor-based high GWP refrigerants,” he said.

If retailers want to remain relevant and competitive, the current grocery delivery process is not sustainable for longevity, Krug said. Today’s grocery delivery requires a new approach that is sustainable and cost-effective.

Expect Phonetic Fleet

Eric Nelson, Director of Sales Fleet Mobility Solutions at Sortimo, said the goal is to develop innovative mobility solutions that help solve issues plaguing the environment.

“Working with Phononic to fit this one-of-a-kind, eco-friendly, all-electric vehicle has allowed us to be part of designing the first wave of truly sustainable grocery delivery,” he offered.

Phononic is still testing the van to understand its impact on the vehicle’s range. But Krug expects the effect to be less.

The Tri-Temperature EV was designed to increase the route density of delivery for retailers. Its unique design allows retailers to add general merchandise and temperature controlled items in addition to groceries to optimize routing for fewer total delivery miles.

Phononic does not plan to sell the actual van, Krug said. By partnering with Sortimo, his company sees an opportunity to refit not only the Ford E-Transit but other vans.

how it works

A possible solution is Phononic’s cooling technology, which uses naturally available CO. Uses water mixed with2, Krug explained. Solid-state technology, portable freezing and refrigeration are now a reality, and the combination keeps anything cold anywhere.

Truly portable freezing and refrigeration has never been possible due to environmental challenges such as shock and vibration, weight, size and availability of power. Its DC-powered refrigeration is controlled by solid-state technology and can enable battery-powered refrigeration.

This method provides consistent, reliable cooling over a long period of time. This reality gives food traders confidence that the ingredients will be kept safely at the required temperature.

Phononic refrigerant system uses only CO2 and water

Phononic’s cooling technology is only CO. makes use of2 And water, as a refrigerant, eliminates environmentally destructive HFCs. (image credit: Phononic)


The system is monitored via Wi-Fi or cellular data to verify cold chain compliance. Solid-state cooling can respond to remote commands for complete temperature control anytime, anywhere.

An important advantage is the ability to reduce the temperature of the entire cargo container or specific compartments inside the vehicle as needed. This optimizes energy use while keeping the rest of the space at a standard temperature.

Thermoelectric technology has been around for more than a century. Until now, what was missing, according to Phononic, was integrating the engineering disciplines of pumping, moving, and controlling heat to create a new thermoelectric system that is powerful, flexible, and efficient.

About vehicle customization

Phononic started its EV delivery van project in June 2021. This vehicle is a fully functional test model, but can be adapted for other vans that require eventual cold chain delivery.

Sortimo’s FR5 shelves are foldable and designed specifically for courier, express delivery and parcel services. SR5 shelves provide the flexibility to develop the interior of the vehicle into any configuration that benefits delivery operation. Combined shelving options allow the transportation of chilled, frozen and general merchandise orders in one vehicle.

Ford’s E-Transit offers up to 487.3 cubic feet of cargo space inside the high ceiling. It has an extended wheelbase configuration and a range of about 126 miles on a single charge.

The market has seen a clear advantage for EV vehicles as compared to combustion based vehicles in distribution solutions. This is one reason you’ve seen announcements from major retailers with multiple EV companies for thousands of EV vans used for grocery delivery, Krug argued.

“Adding a tri-temperature cooling solution from Phononic gives retailers a cold chain solution that eliminates the need for dry ice or other passive cooling options, as well as the high GWP figurines used in compressor tri-temp delivery vans. ,” They said.