Just days after a lone gunman’s rampage through a Connecticut elementary school left 20 children and six adults dead, a Vancouver primary school imposed a four-hour lockdown Monday after being informed of threats made toward its students and staff.
“We want to make sure nothing like that happens here,” Vancouver police spokesman Sgt. Randy Fincham said referring to the Sandy Hook massacre.
Police were alerted of a physical threat directed to Thunderbird Elementary School just after 10 a.m.
Sgt. Fincham said the department was phoned by someone who heard of the potential danger.
“Our focus will be on the investigation as to who made these threats and if these threats were credible or not,” he said.
Police then alerted the school, which sounded a code yellow lockdown from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Officers were put on patrol outside the building.
The Vancouver School Board has two levels of alert when responding to threats directed to the school: code yellow and code red, according to Vancouver School Board spokesman Kurt Heinrich.
During a code yellow students and staff are informed of the threats and the outside doors of the school are locked, according to Mr. Heinrich.
During a code red, in addition to code yellow procedures, classrooms are locked and everyone is told to stay quiet, he said.
Sgt. Fincham said the incident appears to be isolated and the threat was made to the school in general as opposed to an individual or group.
The police were still working to determine if safety measures will be undertaken Tuesday.
During his year-and-half tenure as school board spokesman, Mr. Heinrich said there have been two cases of threats being made against schools, both of which turned out to be false alarms.
Monday’s threat comes after Adam Lanzer, a 20-year-old gunman, massacred 26 people at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., on Friday.
Earlier that day, he also took his mother’s life.
Mr. Lanzer turned his gun on himself before police could apprehend him, bringing the total death count to 28.