Problems happen

Fortunately, the cost of delaying installation of basic security measures didn’t result in much more than an inconvenience for one Midwest K-12 district.

Earlier this month, vandals let the air out of the front tires of the district’s 63 school buses.  Drivers arriving at 5:30 a.m. noticed the problem and maintenance workers began to reseal the rims and fill the tires with air. Truck and tire dealers from the surrounding area came and lent a hand.  About half the buses were ready in time for the morning pickups and all were ready for the afternoon run.

The district rents the buses from a company that keeps them in an unfenced lot.

“There just haven’t been many problems in the past,” the district superintendent was quoted in a local newspaper.

That’s one refrain I hear time and time again.  Given enough time, problems can and will happen in any district.  In this case, something as simple as a basic fence and a locked gate might have prevented the vandalism.

I urge all districts to look at their vulnerabilities and take action to improve security now.  The next time you have a problem, it may not be as easy as this one was to resolve.

PatrickFielPatrick Fiel is public safety advisor for ADT Security Services and a former executive director of school security for Washington, D.C. Public School System. He also served 22 years in the Army Military Police Corps, where his responsibilities included day-to-day security operations at the West Point Military Academy. During his time with ADT, Fiel has conducted more than 100 television, radio, newspaper, and magazine interviews as a public and school safety expert.

Follow Patrick Fiel on Twitter.

Laura Ascione

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