“Smart” 911 service debuts in Knox County

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GALESBURG — Residents in Galesburg and the rest of Knox County can now take advantage of the “Smart 911” service that gives first responders more detailed information during emergencies.

Using Smart 911, individuals and families can create a safety profile with information about location, health history and other factors that can make the difference in a life-and-death situation.

“Smart 911 saves critical time in an emergency and has proven to save lives nationwide,” said Knox County Sheriff Dave Clague, “In the midst of emergencies, callers are panicked and cannot always relay crucial information, and is oftentimes the worst moment of their lives. With Smart 911, the additional information provided can speak for them and save lives.”

Smart 911 allows people to create a  Safety Profile at www.smart911.com for their household that includes any information they want 911 and response teams to have in the event of an emergency. When an emergency call is made, the Safety Profile is automatically displayed to the emergency dispatcher, allowing them to send the right response teams to the right location with the right information. All information is stored on secure servers and will only display when a profile holder dials 911.

The service allows people to link both their home and work addresses to mobile phones, which can be passed on to responders in the field for more a detailed, rapid response. Additional information including pets in the home, vehicle details in the event of an accident, and even emergency contacts can all be included in a safety profile. All information is optional and users maintain the ability to choose what details they would like to include.

“The benefits of this information on a 911 call from a cell phone are immeasurable”, said  Clague, “Mobile phones do not provide an address to the 9-1-1 call taker. In situations like a house fire, seconds matter and the additional information in a Safety Profile enables help to arrive fast.”

Smart911 is currently available in 40 states and more than 1,500 municipalities across the country, and has been credited with positively impacting emergency outcomes, including a missing child in which the girls photo and physical description were immediately available to 9-1-1 and responders, as well as a heart attack victim where an address and medical notes allowed responders to be dispatched to his location quickly.

Citizens are encouraged to create their Safety Profile with Smart911 today to have their information immediately available to 9-1-1 and to receive emergency notifications. Smart911 is private and secure, is only used for emergency responses, and only made available to the 9-1-1 system in the event of an emergency call.