Here at Connected World and over on The Peggy Smedley Show, we are talking about first responders—and the technology that can help them do their job—all month long. With 240 million 911 calls every year, we need to make sure our first responders have the data they need when they need it. With all the information that currently exists, sifting through the noise can be challenging. That is where AI (artificial intelligence) and the IoT (Internet of Things) can help. Technology can help shuffle through all the data and discern what information is needed to respond faster and save more lives.
We see one new example of this today. RapidDeploy announced its integrated emergency response platform will integrate supplemental emergency data from new partnerships like Google, OnStar, ADT, Priority Dispatch, and Rave Mobile Safety. RapidDeploy already has relationships with AT&T, Microsoft, FirstNet, and Esri.
“The world has moved forward at hyper velocity with data and information, but public safety technology has not kept pace,” says Reinhard Ekl, COO, RapidDeploy. “Emergency response centers are still essentially voice-centric; most have not yet transformed into a data-centric organization. As a result, public safety agencies are spending billions of dollars every year on outdated 911 systems. We are working to ensure that every single agency, regardless of size, geography, or budget, has access to the data that they need, in the moments that matter most. We must transform now.”
The objective here, according to the company, is to democratize public safety so that every 911 agency can access the most innovative technology solutions, regardless of geography or budget. “We can now provide accurate 911 caller location faster than ever before, for more 911 calls than ever before,” says Ekl. “Because we’re getting data directly from the source and are no longer using an intermediary, we are now able to display the locations of 911 callers on a map, before the call is even received at the communications center.”
Let’s take a look at one example of how this works. OnStar’s 150 emergency-certified advisors respond to more than 10,000 emergencies every month, including 3,500 cases of automatic crash response notifications. We know timing is everything here, and the data available from sensors in the vehicle will be critical when a customer is not able to call for help. By teaming with OnStar, RapidDeploy is able to display crash data on the 911 map screen, without having to rely on verbal information. Here is another one: Priority Dispatch enables dispatch protocols directly in one unified platform. As Priority Dispatch readies its cloud-based ProQA emergency-dispatching software, RapidDeploy will also be rendering ProQA directly within RapidDeploy’s RadiusPlus tactical map.
Ekl also explains how it is working with FirstNet to help first responders. “FirstNet is a dedicated broadband network for first responders. RapidDeploy’s mobile apps for first responders have undergone a thorough process to get listed on the FirstNet App Store. Some of the recent partnership announcements are more centered on NG911, a dedicated IP network for 911 centers. Both FirstNet and NG911 are offered by AT&T, RapidDeploy’s main go-to-market partner.”
One more case: RapidDeploy and Rave Mobile Safety are working together to connect Rave’s Smart911 emergency profiles, building floor plans, facility information, and tools to communication with populations impacted by emergencies. Also, Rave’s IoT Panic Button can be connected to the RapidDeploy Unified Communications platform to simplify and speed up the flow of critical life-saving information.
Today, the company also unveiled the latest version of its RadiusPlus tactical mapping solution, which is an enhanced cloud-native software solution that includes a direct data integration with Google.
Ekl says, “While the Google data integration is live now for RadiusPlus users, we’re working closely with OnStar, ADT, and Rave to bring additional realtime data to 911 to further improve public safety.”
Now, I could give you a few more examples of how these partnerships are changing the game for first responders, but I think the big takeaway here is this: The collaborations are enabling a richer data transfer, so that first responders have more context of what needs to be done when and where they need it. That simply saves lives. Plain and simple.
Data is the crux of any good industry operating quickly and in a manner that will deliver the best possible outcomes. This is certainly the case for first responders. We just need to make sure first responders can get to where they need to be when they need to be there. Gotta love the data.
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