New 911 technology helps save stranded kayakers

Person calls 911
Person calls 911(Source: WMC Action News 5)
Updated: Jun. 17, 2019 at 5:55 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

SHELBY COUNTY, Tenn. (WMC) - New technology at Shelby County dispatch centers is giving local first responders a critical edge.

“We definitely believe this will help save lives. Rapid SOS technology is extremely important,” Raymond Chiozza, director of Shelby County 911 district, said.

The new technology is offered by a company called Rapid SOS and allows emergency dispatchers to see pinpoint locations of callers using cell phones.

Chiozza says that Rapid SOS helped save two lives this weekend.

“Well it helped to locate them a lot faster than it would have been,” he said.

Saturday night, a man and woman were stranded and disoriented in the Wolf River after their kayak capsized.

Emergency crews quickly found and rescued them after they called 911 thanks to Rapid SOS technology.

They only had minor injuries.

“This technology is a game changer,” Karin Marquez with Rapid SOS said.

She says Shelby County was one of the first in Tennessee to start using the new location technology.

Shelby County dispatchers have been able access pinpoint locations since last December.

“If you use your Apple or Google map and you look at that little blue dot that tells you where that device is, that’s the kind of location accuracy that we’re able to receive on a 911 call,” Marquez said.

Today, Rapid SOS is in 3,000 911 centers across the country, covering approximately 85 percent of the nation.

“Every week we hear success stories where this location technology is able to save someone’s life,” Marquez said.

To allow the location technology to help save your life, make sure to update your phone to Apple IOS 12.0 or Android IOS 4.0.

Copyright 2019 WMC. All rights reserved.