LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — When there’s an active shooter inside a school, every second counts.

But when first-responders arrive to the scene, they may not know the layout of the campus.

The Riverside Police air support team has spent the last few months creating school overlay maps so they know exactly where they’re going in an emergency.

“A lot of the time, information is coming in from students. They’re calling in saying, ‘We’re in classroom 602.’ We have no idea where classroom 602 is,” Riverside Police Department’s Jeff Ratkovich said.

Over the last few months, the police department has been working with school resource officers in Riverside and Corona, mapping out every single public and private school.

“We’re able to now, in real-time … see. We’re not having to guess where we’re looking for a suspect or a critical situation like that,” Ratkovich said.

Police say they hope they never have to put this information to use in a shooting situation. But they say if the worst was to happen, having this level of information could save lives.

“I really think it’s a game changer,” Ratkovich said.

Riverside police say they are the first to create aerial school maps like this. They say they hope others will follow their lead.


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