By Jim Melwert


DELAWARE COUNTY, PA (CBS) — Following the school shooting in South Florida, officials in Delaware County are reminding residents of steps they’ve taken in hopes of preventing a similar tragedy.

Delaware County Council Chairman John McBlain says, following the Sandy Hook shooting, panic buttons were set up in every public and parochial school in the county, linking those schools directly to 9-1-1 call centers, while also prompting an immediate response from law enforcement.

“As best we can describe it, the cavalry is coming when that button is pushed,” McBlain said.

He says more than 70,000 students are covered by those buttons in more than 240 schools.

Rather than reacting to a shooting, McBlain says they would rather prevent it.

“One of the stories that emerges is: what we can we do in order to deal with a person like this?” he said.

He says the county’s Office of Behavioral Health runs a 24-hour-a-day hotline.

“Let us know about a suspected problem. It doesn’t have to be someone who committed a crime, it could be someone that you just are worried about,” McBlain said.

That number is 855-889-7827, there’s a link at the Delaware County homepage.