Active shooter incidents have increased over the past few years. The FBI defines these as incidents where one or more people are actively engaged in killing or trying to kill other people in a populated area using a firearm. The FBI excludes many mass shootings in their stats (e.g., gang violence), but other sources, such as The Gun Violence Archive, shows greater numbers in their active shooter database representing the broader ‘mass shooting’ definition: 617 for 2022 and 693 for 2021.
These incidents spanned various types of locations demonstrating the variability and unpredictability of incidents for all kinds of facilities. Whether we look at the FBI stats or other sources, we constantly hear about shooting incidents in the news, and all the details surrounding the events. This information has made us hyper-aware of our personal safety and that of our family members.
Education Sector is Top-of-mind
Perhaps we tune in most to the active shooter incidents at schools. Teachers, students and other staff members have been targets of many mass shootings. These incidents started the push for better video security, communications with law enforcement, additions of school safety officers and access controls at entrances.
Early detection of a potential shooter has become paramount to prevention. Detecting a possible shooter before a shooting begins can provide critical seconds in which alerts can be deployed and security teams can act. This means when schools have the ability to autonomously react when a weapon is detected (before the shooting starts) they have a greater chance to protect their environment. Also, by using video technology to know where the shooter is located, law enforcement has more relevant and actionable information to neutralize the intruder.
REACT – Visible Weapon Detection
Konica Minolta’s Video Security Solution’s development team recognized the need for a detection solution and created an algorithm on its REACT platform that can detect a visible weapon. REACT is a comprehensive, end-to-end platform that helps organizations analyze situations and behaviors, offering advanced on-site (edge-based) real-time recognition and judgment-based AI processing. The action engine enables the early detection of a visible weapon so action can be taken before there is any shooting. This algorithm, powered by Artificial Intelligence (AI), adjusts for different indoor and outdoor environments, distance and field-of-view considerations, while delivering a highly reliable detection rate for visible firearms within seconds.
This Visible Weapon Detection (VWD) module gives K-12 school districts and higher educational institutions the ability to rapidly detect an active shooter and quickly share that information with their security team and local law enforcement. For instance, VWD helps the security team by:
The bottom-line value results from utilizing AI to enhance a security team’s information and offering greater, more actionable knowledge. A person monitoring several image streams from several IP cameras 24/7 will get fatigued and may miss something. Augmenting any security team with the VWD AI algorithm to assist in detecting weapons provides an additional layer of security.
By detecting visible weapons, VWD primarily focuses on individuals who have a drawn weapon. If we look back at the FBI’s location list, there are few legitimate reasons to have a drawn weapon in a store, at a business or school, church or hospital unless there is intent to commit a crime or a shooting.
We see the VWD algorithm as a component of a comprehensive video security strategy for organizations. To deliver an effective weapons detection system, the Field of View of the scene should guarantee an image density for the firearm of 30 pixels. While a weapon shape is somewhat detectable with an 18-pixel resolution density, it’s not enough to have a reliable outcome – 30 pixels is best.
Smart Video Security Systems
It is the combination of hi-resolution images and reliable cameras plus AI-driven algorithms that give organizations a safe and secure environment. Adding detection or behavioral features advance the type of information that a smart video security system can provide. And, it enables the Facility Managers or Security Team to provide better protection.
Better detection leads to better prevention, and the main purpose of an end-to-end video security solution is to ensure facility and personal safety via the information that is provided to the security team. With the assistance of AI, security teams are no longer relying on a 100 percent manual process.
Time is Critical
As we continue to develop additional applications on REACT, we will expand the opportunity for our customers to effectively utilize and unlock existing data about their facilities, operations and workers.
Using the information in a timely manner will give organizations the data they need to have a higher level of awareness than ever before and enable them to act quickly.
With any security breach, time is critical to deter, prevent or subdue a possible escalation, so having the tools in place to assist the security team is the best solution for organizations.
Learn more about Konica Minolta’s Visible Weapon Detection (VWD) solution online.
DISCLAIMER: REACT – VISIBLE WEAPON DETECTION DOES NOT CAUSE AND CANNOT ELIMINATE OCCURENCES OF THE EVENTS IT IS INTENDED TO DETECT OR AVERT. KONICA MINOLTA MAKES NO GUARANTY OR WARRANTY, INCLUDING ANY IMPLIED WARRANTY OF MERCHANTABILITY OR FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE, THAT THE SERVICES, SYSTEM OR EQUIPMENT SUPPLIED WILL DETECT OR AVERT SUCH EVENTS OR THE CONSEQUENCES THEREFROM. ACCORDINGLY, KONICA MINOLTA DOES NOT UNDERTAKE ANY RISK THAT CUSTOMER’S PERSON OR PROPERTY, OR THE PERSON OR PROPERTY OF OTHERS, MAY BE SUBJECT TO INJURY OR LOSS IF SUCH AN EVENT OCCURS. THE ALLOCATION OF SUCH RISK REMAINS WITH CUSTOMER, NOT KONICA MINOLTA. INSURANCE, IF ANY, COVERING SUCH RISK SHALL BE OBTAINED BY CUSTOMER. KONICA MINOLTA SHALL HAVE NO LIABILITY FOR LOSS, DAMAGE OR INJURY DUE DIRECTLY OR INDIRECTLY TO EVENTS, OR THE CONSEQUENCES THEREFROM, WHICH THE SYSTEM OR SERVICES ARE INTENDED TO DETECT OR AVERT.