Where do the good ideas come from? In this column, we offer our readers the opportunity to learn about — and benefit from — some of the cuttingedge technologies being implemented by law enforcement colleagues around the world.
EmFinders EmSeeQ Locates Wandering Individuals in Emergency SituationsEmFinders announces the initial rollout of its EmFinders EmSeeQ wide-area location device and service. Emfinders EmSeeQ is an emergency response solution designed to work in conjunction with law enforcement officials and the 9-1-1 community to help immediately locate adults with cognitive and developmental disabilities and children who wander, including those diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease and autism. The solution utilizes a watch-like wearable device and cellular network-based U-TDOA (Uplink Time Difference of Arrival) technology to provide unparalleled tracking information in emergency situations. Using this technology, the location of individuals wearing this device is quickly and accurately determined. Furthermore, unlike other solutions (GPS, A-GPS, RF), Emfinders EmSeeQ can locate wanderers who are indoors or are otherwise blocked by a wall, roof, or building, regardless of how far they wander from home.
EmFinders EmSeeQ is integrated throughout the United States with current E9-1-1 systems. Law enforcement officials and the 9-1-1 community can rely on the EmFinders EmSeeQ system beginning immediately, without configuring any new systems, equipment, or software, and without incurring any cost. EmFinders coordinates directly with public safety access point (PSAP) dispatchers in emergency situations to eliminate the “search” portion of search and rescue missions—dramatically reducing the time needed to locate and recover wandering individuals, while saving law enforcement agencies and the 9-1-1 community valuable human resources and tax dollars.
“Locating wandering individuals in a particular area can often be like searching for a needle in a haystack,” says Frisco, Texas, Police Chief, Todd Renshaw. “If the wanderer has driven somewhere, that becomes multiple haystacks. It’s encouraging to know that we can begin receiving support from EmFinders immediately without any extra effort on our part. I would advise all law enforcement agencies to become familiar with this service.”
EmFinders EmSeeQ offers a watch-like device that can be worn by any individual with the propensity to wander, including those with Alzheimer’s disease, autism, and other cognitive and developlmental disabilities. In emergency situations, caregivers make just two phone calls: the first is to 9-1-1 and the second is to EmFinders. The cellular network then provides 9-1-1 dispatchers the location of the missing individual. According to a recent report by the Alzheimer’s Association, there are currently 5.3 million Americans living with Alzheimer’s disease, and a new case is diagnosed every 70 seconds. By 2050, the association expects nearly one million new cases to be diagnosed each year. Furthermore, 1.5 million people living in the United States currently have autism, and it is known to be the fastestgrowing developmental disability with an annual growth rate of 10-17 percent. An online survey conducted by the National Autism Association showed that 92 percent of children with autism are prone to wandering and the Alzheimer’s Association states that 70 percent of those with dementia are likely to wander throughout the course of their disability.
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Collision Management Solutions to Combat Resource Shortfalls
Accident Support Services International Ltd. (ASSI) introduces Collision Reporting Centers (CRCs) to help police overcome manpower shortages, restricted budgets, and overcrowding of roads. This has allowed police agencies in Canada to reallocate many millions of dollars of manpower annually since 1994. Police involvement goes from 90 to 120 minutes to only five minutes per collision.
When crash victims call 9-1-1, police screen the call. If there are no injuries, suspected criminal activity, or hazardous waste involvement, parties are directed to the CRC to report their collision where trained staff provided by private enterprise assist drivers to complete collision reports, take damage photos, and enter the information.
Features include fewer officers needed for collision reporting, allowing significant redeployment to higher priority calls for service; improved response time through increased officer availability; clearing traffic faster, reducing secondary collisions and increasing officer and public safety; Collision Reporting and Occurrence Management System (CROMS) electronically captures all data on government collision reports; and about 75 percent of collisions can be reported through the CRC.
The program is flexible to fit each state law enforcement agency’s individual needs. With several funding models available including the government-funded model and the insurance-funded model, reallocate millions of budget dollars—representing the difference in police wages and the expense of a private partner. Included with CRC is the Microsoft Award-winning Collision Reporting and Occurrence Management System (CROMS) that electronically captures and stores all data, scanned documents, and photos.
“Collision Reporting Centres have been in operation for many years and have provided a great benefit to both the Toronto Police Service and the citizens of Toronto,” says William Blair, Chief of Toronto Police Service.
“It allowed our Service to immediately realize more efficiencies in our operations,” relates Brian Mullan, Chief of Hamilton Police Service.
Accident Support Services International Ltd. is currently looking to work with a law enforcement agency in piloting their first United States model and working with state legislators to sanction this initiative to move forward. ■
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