Given the horrific event that occurred last month in Newtown, Connecticut, it’s not surprising that we’re seeing a rise in products designed specifically to protect children against shootings in schools. One of the latest such devices is a bulletproof dry-erase whiteboard.
Made by Maryland-based Hardwire Armor Systems, the 18 x 20-inch (46 x 51-cm) ballistic whiteboard is made to be carried around the classroom by the teacher, who would ordinarily use it as a non-intimidating-looking teaching aid – it weighs less than four pounds (1.8 kg), and has rubberized handles on the back.
In the event of an attack, the idea is presumably that the teacher could grab the board, get between the shooter and the students, then use it to protect both themselves and the children. Its bullet-stopping capabilities come thanks to Dyneema, a polyethylene-based material developed by the company. The board is reportedly capable of absorbing multiple clips of ammunition from point-blank range without ricochet or injury, as can be seen in the video below.
The ballistic whiteboard is available via the Hardwire website, for US$299. A smaller bulletproof clipboard is additionally available for $109 – IMPACT Armor Technologies also makes one, although it’s intended more for use by police forces.