County encourages residents to sign up for Smart911
As the new year draws near, DuPage County officials are asking residents to “resolve to be safe” and sign up for Smart911. Smart911 is a free, confidential service that allows users to create a profile that is activated in participating dispatch centers when a person dials 911. The electronic safety profile provides essential household information about family members, your home, pets and vehicles. This information will display automatically on the 911 call taker’s screen when users make an emergency call. It’s private and secure, and users control what information is in their profile.
DuPage County Emergency Telephone Service Board (ETSB) Chairman Gary Grasso said, “More than 70% of 911 calls come from mobile phones. That cell phone’s exact location can’t always be determined by GPS from a cell tower. Smart911’s enhanced service displays the listed address of the mobile phone in the profile and can track the call via GPS, even if the call is disconnected. This is just one of many reasons it makes sense for consumers to take a moment this holiday season to set up a Smart 911 profile and ensure their family’s safety.”
Smart 911 is a valuable tool when searching for missing children, assisting unresponsive callers who are unable to speak due to a medical condition, or in a house fire when first responders need to locate and account for family members, pets and essential documents. Since the service launched in DuPage in June of 2011, more than 25,000 families have registered to use this system. Approximately 15,000 calls received by DuPage 911 centers had Smart911 profiles.
What information can be included?
Anything a user thinks could be useful, including:
- Family members’ ages, photos or physical descriptions
- Information about their home, including address, utility shutoff valves and keyholders
- Medical information, such as medications, medical conditions or disabilities
- Special considerations like language restrictions, restraining orders or rescue notes
The cost of Smart911software in DuPage is supported through the 911 surcharge on phone bills. The service is available to anyone who lives, works or visits DuPage County. Information provided is confidential and available only to emergency responders during a 911 call. Smart 911 can be especially valuable to households with young children, seniors, or anyone with a physical or mental disability. Learn more on the DuPage ETSB webpage at www.dupageco.org/smart911 and register at www.smart911.com.