Articles
3
min read

Planning & Protecting America’s Schools with Locatrix’s PlanViewer

Written by
Helen Hall
Published on
April 2, 2024
Scott Riddick, front and center in his days as a Secret Service Agent.

When you think of Secret Service Agents, it's easy to picture iconic spies like Jason Bourne and James Bond – occasionally even Austin Powers.

These characters engage in exciting battles against over-the-top villains, risking it all to save the day. But then, you meet a real-life Secret Service agent, and you quickly realize that their work is far more significant than what's depicted in the movies.

Scott Riddick spent 22 years working at the most senior level, protecting Presidents and world leaders.  In addition, he has extensive experience conducting security operations overseas, interfacing with different cultures as well as having a decades-long interest & understanding of computers and computer networks.

Scott’s career took a different direction on 25 May 2022 when he accompanied President Biden to the scene of Uvalde school shooting where 19 students and 2 staff were fatally shot by an 18 year old former student of the school.  As he walked through the scene of such horror, he started see the school from a perspective that only he could.

“I could immediately recognise how some of the techniques I have been trained in could have prevented this terrible event.  What I saw that day was a trigger for me to act on this knowledge and do what I could to prevent incidents like these ever happening again”.

During his time in the Secret Service, Scott became expert at effectively planning and coordinating operations and key events.  Taking into consideration every detail of note.  If he had to accompany a world leader to an event, one of the most critical factors of planning was to have accurate floor plans and scan them for vulnerabilities to maintain the safety of his assignment.    

“It was surprising to learn that schools in general had very little information on their building layouts and plans, and what little information they did have was often very out of date.  We are talking about some schools that are so large they accommodate up to 5000 students with enormous campuses.  How could any police department confidently respond to an active shooter when they have no plans or any idea of the site layout of a campus?  It isn’t enough to be told there is an active shooter in the art room, you need to know where that art room is, where the exits are, the wayfinding to and from and any risks such as hazardous materials which may exist somewhere like a science lab or cleaners store”  

The experience at Uvalve highlighted to Scott the need for better information to prevent school shootings and this was something he could action.  Scott resigned from the Secret Service and started Hawkeye S3 almost immediately.  In two short years Hawkeye S3 has helped over 50 schools improve their safety specializing in security audits and emergency planning.     

The key element to this planning was providing a digital map of the site.   

“At first, we were drafting with pen and paper which was a tedious and time-consuming process.  I began to look around for software that could help which led me to Locatrix.  PlanStudio has been revolutionary for our business in the time saved and the ease of use.  Previously when I was recruiting a drafter, applicants needed experience in graphic design but with PlanStudio, no experience is necessary, and the quality of the digital plans are exceptional.  We have three drafters using PlanStudio now”    

Where Scott is finding the main point of difference is Locatrix’s new offering PlanViewer.  

“PlanViewer is a wonderful evolution.  It enables first responders to get to a site, scan a QR code and immediately gain access to the plans we at Hawkeye S3 have created, highlighted details for first responders to help them plan their operations.  They will know where the art room is and be able to wayfind direct and alternate pathways to manage an emergency.  The information I can provide with PlanViewer is making the difference we need in order to improve safety in our schools and do a better job when responding to such horrific events”.  
“Working with the team at Locatrix has been transformative for my business offering.  I can share my insights and the development team have been really great at offering solutions.  Digital Mapping certainly is the future of improved safety and its great to have found a partner in Locatrix who are just as aligned in improving situational awareness and safety outcomes as we are at Hawkeye S3”.
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