School shootings are a continuing problem in the US as illustrated by yesterday's horrific high school shooting in Parkland, Florida which left 17 people dead and many others injured.
Now, shocking statistics have demonstrated just how serious the problem is, as they revealed that there has been a school shooting in the US every 60 hours this year.
Data collected by gun control advocacy group Everytown for Gun Safety shows that yesterday's shooting was the 18th in the 45 full days of 2018 so far. That's an average of one every 60 hours, or two and a half days.
According to its website, Everytown for Gun Safety defines a school shooting as 'any time a firearm discharges a live round inside a school building or on a school campus or grounds, as documented by the press'.
In eight of the 17 shootings documented by the non-profit prior to yesterday's fatal shooting, a gun was fired but no-one was injured. Two were attempted or completed suicides with no intent to injure someone else.
According to the data, Texas is the state that's seen the most school shootings so far this year, with three. There have two shootings in different schools in Michigan and California and a single shooting in 11 other states - including yesterday's in Florida.
The frequency of school shootings in the US was criticised by one US politician who called the problem an 'epidemic' that the country must tackle.
"This happens nowhere else other than the United States of America - this epidemic of mass slaughter, this scourge of school shooting after school shooting," the junior Senator from Connecticut, Christopher Murphy, said on the Senate floor yesterday.
"It only happens here not because of coincidence, not because of bad luck, but as a consequence of our inaction," he continued. "We are responsible for a level of mass atrocity that happens in this country with zero parallel anywhere else."
The suspected perpetrator of yesterday's shooting, 19-year-old Nikolas Cruz, is now in custody after he allegedly stormed into his former high school Majory Stoneman Douglas High School wielding an AR-15 assault rifle.
Students were found to have barricaded themselves inside rooms while the shooter made his way in and around the school, killing seventeen people - fourteen in the school, two just outside and one in the street.
The shooter briefly escaped after the shooting but authorities later confirmed that he had been arrested without incident and is now in custody.
Posts made to Instagram by Cruz have revealed him to have an obsession with violence, as he uploaded photos of himself showing weapons like pistols and knives along with other worrying images and captions.
Cruz's former classmates also came forward to say that they'd always feared he was capable of an act like yesterday's shooting, calling Cruz 'crazy' and alleging he had previously killed animals.
Some people in the US will argue that after this latest school shooting it's high time for tighter gun control, while others will claim it's still too soon. Either way, it seems like something has to change.