PRESS RELEASE

Belmont Announces Smart911 Service for Enhanced Emergency Response

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belmont ma police dept

Public safety officials encourage citizens to create a Safety Profile in case of emergency

February 17, 2015   – What if there is a fire, a medical emergency, or a child goes missing?  When you dial 9-1-1, you’re panicked and even the simplest of details like an address or medical notes can be hard to remember.  Belmont police announced today that there is a free new service in place to provide this information to dispatchers as soon as a 9-1-1 call is placed.

Smart911 is a national service that allows citizens to create a free Safety Profile for their household that includes  any information they want 9-1-1 and first responders to have in the event of an emergency.  If that citizen needs to dial 9-1-1, their Safety Profile will immediately display on the call taker’s screen, saving seconds and even minutes in response to the emergency.

“We take great pride in providing the best available resources to enhance safety in our community,” said Police Chief Richard McLaughlin. “By utilizing this technology, our citizens are now able to give us the information we need to better help them during a time of great distress, when communicating even the simplest of details can be difficult.”

Citizens can visit www.smart911.com to sign up and create a free Safety Profile for their household, providing information such as the names and photos of family members, health conditions, medications, pets in the home, vehicle details and emergency contacts.  All information in each profile is voluntary, and each household can determine what details are important to include, as each household is different and therefore the potential rescue needs will also vary.

“Even the simplest of details can help our officers during an emergency,” said Chief McLaughlin “From knowing the access points to the home, whether there is a pet we need to be aware of when approaching or entering the home or just knowing the name of the person in distress can ensure the safety of our citizens and our officers.”

With over 25,500 residents living in the town and over 4,500 9-1-1 calls coming into Belmont Police Dispatch each year, Smart911 will give 9-1-1 call takers the ability to send the appropriate response teams to the right location and with more information.

Examples of situations in which Smart911 can assist include:

  • If a call is made from a mobile phone, a Safety Profile can provide an address which will allow first responders a location to respond to, even if cell service is poor or the call is dropped.
  • If there is a fire in the home, a Safety Profile can immediately provide details on how to gain access into the building, the number of residents and pets inside, and a floor plan detailing the location of bedrooms and nearest exits.
  • During a medical emergency, a Safety Profile can deliver important details on how to treat a patient, ranging from potential allergies to medical conditions such as epilepsy or autism
  • In a car accident, the Safety Profile can include vehicle information, the citizen’s medical treatment restrictions and emergency contact details

“We often spend the first few minutes during an emergency gathering information and assessing the scene," said Assistance Fire Chief Angus Davidson. “By having this information, such as photos of family members, details of those who may need evacuation assistance and even utility shut off locations, while we are en route we can begin our on scene efforts more quickly.”

Smart911 has been adopted in 38 states and over 1,000 municipalities.  It has been credited with positively impacting emergency situations and saving lives across the U.S., including a missing child case in Arkansas, a heart attack victim in Tennesee and a man trapped in a house fire in Michigan.  In Massachusetts Smart911 is also available in Blackstone, Chelsea, Everett, Framingham, Medford, Milford, Somerset, Stoughton and Watertown.

Citizens are encouraged to sign up for Smart911 and create a Safety Profile at www.smart911.comto ensure 9-1-1 will have access to their information during an emergency. Smart911 is private and secure, and is only made available to 9-1-1 when an emergency call is made.

Questions: Contact Assistant Chief James MacIsaac

  617-993-2574 

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