With fears for child safety rising after last week’s mass shooting of elementary school students in Newtown, Conn., parents are desperately looking for protective gear.
BulletBlocker, which makes bulletproof backpacks designed for children, said since the Newtown rampage, its sales have jumped from between 15 to 20 units per day to between 50 and 100 a day, the Washington Post noted.
Other body-armor manufacturers are reporting a similar spike. Amendment II, an Arizona-based maker of lightweight armor for the military, which entered the backpack business six months ago, says its sales have soared more than 500% in the Newtown aftermath. It says it can’t make backpacks fast enough to meet demand.
On Thursday alone, the company reported the sale of 200 backpacks. It plans to donate money from its backpack sales to the Newtown victims.
The makers of bulletproof backpacks, which sell for between $200 and $500, say interest in their products has risen along with the number of school shootings, especially after the 2007 massacre at Virginia Tech, which claimed 33 lives.
However, some security experts fear that interest in body armor might take attention away from implementing effective school security plans. They also note that students don’t carry their backpacks with them all day long. Psychologists also say wearing body armor might make children more insecure about going to school.