As the FCC and public safety officials work to define and build out the next-generation 911 infrastructure that will be capable of providing first responders with detailed situational awareness of the scene of an emergency, universities, localities and states have begun building and using some of the pieces envisioned in the completed whole. Providing beneficial information to first responders when a 911 call is received could decrease response times and increase safety.
Numerous projects are under way to increase the flow of information between governments and citizens. For example, state and local governments, including Delaware and two Georgia cities, are encouraging citizens to verify their address and register basic medical information with them to facilitate emergency assistance. And universities have begun deploying platforms that allow users to text 911.
Now a California school district is piloting a smartphone application that brings all those capabilities together and allows students to reach out for emergency help with a touch of a button. So far 12 students in the Alhambra Unified School District are testing the app, called SafeKidZone, which creates a personal safety network for children that quickly connects to 911 when they push the “panic button.”
Go to Emergency Management to read more about the emergency app.
The Federal Communication Commission (FCC), in October 2009, invited SafeKidZone, developer of advanced child safety software for mobile devices, to comment on the vital need for adoption of broadband technologies by 911 Operators. Currently, data on emergency situations can only be submitted to 911 Operators verbally by telephone, when capabilities exist for data such as photographs, precise GPS locations, mapping and much more to be instantly transmitted over broadband.
SafeKidZone is a member of the MobileTREC family of mobile phone safety products. These products provide a quick emergency response method for the public to use from their mobile phone in case of danger.
“SafeKidZone urges the rapid adoption of broadband technologies to better communicate with emergency responders, as we believe that the absence or delay in implementing such infrastructure continues to compromise the safety of those citizens who rely on the existing system,” wrote SafeKidZone CEO and President Don L. Ferguson in the submitted comment.
SafeKidZone services offer immediate opportunity for family, friends, guardians and neighbors to be first responders during a crisis situation. In the event an incident escalates to a 911 emergency, SafeKidZone can partner with 911 Operators. By utilizing the information gathered by SafeKidZone, and working closely with local authorities, crisis situations can be more quickly addressed. However, for that union to be seamless, the technology must be compatible so that data can be transmitted to all parties immediately, thereby reducing lost time and the potential of compromising an already unstable situation.
“Our mission at SafeKidZone is simple and direct: to protect children from dangerous environments and dangerous situations,” Ferguson said. “By providing technology that is available on their cell phones, we extend the guardianship of concerned parents. By utilizing existing modern technology, implemented in our propriety software and in conjunction with our highly trained call center personnel, we create an environment where the opportunity to positively affect the resolution of a crisis situation is more likely to exist.”
SafeKidZone is proud to be partnered with the Alhambra Unified School District and Alhambra Police Department. This project is designed to reduce the incidence of school bullying as well as making a safer overall experience for their students and families.
SafeKidZone’s parent company, MobileTREC, is now a member of the NENA (National Emergency Number Association) Next-Generation (NG) Partner Program. NENA’s Next Generation Partner Program (NGPP) is a collaborative effort between public and private stakeholders. It was created to anticipate the impact of emerging technologies on 9-1-1 services and provide an expert forum to support resolution of basic issues that, if unresolved, would block progress toward next-generation 9-1-1. The ultimate goal of NENA’s Next Generation Partner Program is to ensure that everyone has access to emergency services anytime, anywhere, from any device. MobileTREC will now be contributing our considerable technological expertise to the forward motion of next-generation emergency calling services.
SafeKidZone is an app exclusive on SHOP4APPS by Motorola and is featured in the promotion of SHOP4APPS stores pre-loaded on handsets launched in Argentina, Brazil and Mexico.