Earlier this year, Kent County, MI launched Smart911 to address some of the location data challenges affecting public safety in their community. Kent County emergency management officials created this incredibly impactful video about the challenges of responding to emergency calls made from cell phones, and how the addition of Smart911 is turning it all around.
“Most people think that when you dial 9-1-1, no matter how you dial 9-1-1, that we are going to be able to find you immediately every time – and that’s not necessarily the case,” said Matt Groesser, Kent County Emergency Communications Center Manager. Groesser compares the location challenges between 9-1-1 calls made from landlines and mobile phones, speaking to the difficulties of determining accurate locations for mobile phone calls. Over 82% of all 9-1-1 call made in Kent County come from mobile phones, one reason officials decided to adopt Smart911 as an innovate solution to address these location challenges.
Smart911 – a product of the Rave 911 Suite – allows individuals to create a free online safety profile for their household, including key information to assist 9-1-1 call takers during an emergency. When an individual with a profile calls 911, their account is pulled up to immediately provide the call-taker with information that can include home address, medical information, family makeup, home layout, pet descriptions, and the location of gas and electrical shutoffs. Smart911 is credited with positively impacting emergency outcomes, including fires, missing child cases, and medical emergencies.