BOSTON (CBS) — Tragedies like the school shooting in Florida on Wednesday often bring questions about school safety to the forefront people’s minds.

The United States is averaging out to one school shooting a week since 2013. Former Boston Police Commissioner and WBZ-TV’s Security Analyst Ed Davis says the only ways to truly stop that is with better gun regulations.

“I don’t want to take guns away from people that have a right to have them” but there are holes in the system, said Davis.

“There needs to be common sense legislation to reduce the number of firearms that are in the hands especially of mentally ill individuals.”

In the meantime, he said, the Columbine school massacre changed the way first responders approach a school shooter.

“What we’ve been seeing lately is just a desire to kill,” said Davis.

Police used to work to secure the area, now the first officials on the scene head straight to the sound of gunshots.

“In Columbine, we learned, because we delayed our response, more people died,” said Davis.

“The first [officers] will literally walk by victims and over victims… to identify and to neutralize the threat and that’s their job.”

People are brought out of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School after a shooting at the school that reportedly killed and injured multiple people on February 14, 2018 in Parkland, Florida. Numerous law enforcement officials continue to investigate the scene. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

As more officers respond, police secure the area and search it.

“Teams will go door to door, closet by closet, open up every potential place where someone could be hiding in and make sure that there’s either no suspect or no victim or someone that could be hiding just because they are so frightened.”

Davis said it is essential for school districts to “train, train, train” for worst cases scenarios such as this.

“They need to pay attention to this threat. They need to have not only training but policy, and the policy needs to be tested. The reason we were able to respond to well to the Boston Marathon is because the officers in the Boston Police Department trained over and over and over again to deal with that type of threat. Unfortunately, the same training is necessary in schools and businesses across America.”

“Schools and businesses in Massachusetts need to teach the ‘run, hide, fight’ curriculum that DHS has recommended for these situations.”

When it was safe to evacuate, students ran out of the Florida school with their arms out and left their backpacks behind.

For now, investigators will comb through the suspect’s posts, digital and cell records, and speak with friends and relatives, in an effort to find a motive.

Ed Davis (WBZ-TV)


In Force Technology, a Danvers-based company, developed a computer and cell phone app for schools that allows teachers to send alerts to police during emergencies, like Wednesday’s shooting.

According to the company, the app cuts down on the time it would take for a cell phone 911 call to be transferred from state police to local police.

CEO Brandon Flanagan said, “We’re cutting response time immediately, but also importantly, we’re giving law enforcement specific preprogrammed information, down to the classroom number where the threat originated from.”

Above all, Davis stressed the importance of always being vigilant.

“We need to think about what would happen if a shooter came in the front door of our business, of the mall, of the restaurant that we’re in, if we think about those things, we can literally save our lives and the lives of our families.”