LANSING, Mich., February 17, 2016 – What if there is a fire, a medical emergency, or a child goes missing? When a person dials 9-1-1, they are panicked and even the simplest of details like an address or medical details can be hard to remember. Officials in Ingham County announced today a free new service to provide this information to dispatchers when 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 be displayed on the call taker’s screen, saving seconds and even minutes in response to the emergency.
“The safety of our residents and visitors is of the utmost importance and the addition of Smart911 will provide a valuable tool for all those who live and work in, or travel through, the city of Lansing and surrounding Ingham County,” said Bryan Crenshaw, commisioner of Ingham County. “I strongly encourage all of our residents and visitors to take advantage of this service by creating their Safety Profile in case of emergency.”
Individuals 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. Smart911 is private and secure, and is only made available to 9-1-1 when an emergency call is made.
“The addition of new technology always offers a substantial advantage to the service we can provide to those in need during the time of an emergency,” said Lance Langdon, director of Ingham County Central Dispatch. “Smart911 will allow both our 9-1-1 call takers and our emergency responders to have more detailed information about a citizen in need, leading to faster response times and ultimately more lives saved.”
Already available in more than a dozen counties across Michigan, Smart911 has been credited with saving the life of a Grand Traverse man trapped in a house fire as well as assisting in medical emergencies all across the state. Other counties offering the Smart911 service include Antrim, Barry, Crawford, Eaton, Grand Traverse, Ionia, Kalkaska, Montcalm, Muskegon, Ottawa, Roscommon, Shiawassee, Van Buren as well as the city of Milan. Ingham County is the first of six that are set to deploy in 2016.
“Even the smallest details can help when we are responding to an emergency,” said Chief Brian Ball, Delhi Township Fire Department. “When callers are in a panic, they can have trouble remembering even the simplest of details. By having more information before we arrive on scene, we can assess the situation and provide assistance to those in need much faster.”
The following are a few examples of how Smart911 has helped Michigan 9-1-1 dispatchers and first responders to better help citizens in danger:
- In Ionia County, two young children called 9-1-1 and reported they were left home alone. Ionia County Central Dispatch took advantage of contact information contained within the accompanying Safety Profile to make sure that the children, were in fact, under adult supervision. This relieved the necessity to dispatch a police officer to perform a wellness check.
- In Muskegon County, a 60-year old man called 9-1-1 with labored breathing and unable to speak more than one or two words at a time. The medical information contained within the caller’s Safety Profile gave the call taker the information he needed to verify critical details and immediately dispatch EMS, saving time and allowing the dispatcher to focus on keeping the man calm and regulating his breathing.
- In Ottawa County, a confused, elderly man with a speech impairment called 9-1-1. The details within his Safety Profile included emergency contacts, who police were able to reach and obtain the necessary access code to enter the caller’s residence and confirm his safety, saving a great deal of time and resources.