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New York School District Rolls Out Emergency Devices

The SituCon system includes surveillance and emergency notifications that activate with the push of a button.
The SituCon system includes surveillance and emergency notifications that activate with the push of a button.

A school district in New York has implemented an emergency video and audio notification system that only activates cameras when a somebody pushes an alerting device. Earlier this year Port Washington Union Free School District implemented gear from Port Washington-based SituCon Systems in several elementary schools. The district obtained the equipment at no cost.

Should an emergency occur, a teacher or staff person can push a wireless SituCon "Instant Alert" button on their person, which generates e-mails and texts to school administrators and local police with identifying information such as the individual's name, location, and phone number.

Simultaneously, "eyelids" on SituCam video cameras open and begin recording video of the situation at the police dispatch center and on responding officers' smart phones, so that they have a better understanding about what's happening as they enter the emergency site. At other times, SituCam's eyelids remain closed.

The district may expand the hardware to its remaining schools as timing and budget allows.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a writer who covers technology and business for a number of publications. Contact her at dian@dischaffhauser.com.

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