When you Call 911, … on your cell phone, …

Dear Readers,
A recent NBC investigative report showed that 911 cell phone callers are usually off by certain numbers of feet, miles, and inches away from the actual emergency location. NBC did the investigation, and they found that if you call 911 on your cell phone, you still won’t be found. I have had several experiences with 911. Let me tell you, with the satellite technology with GPS on it, we should be using 911 on cell phones to find the person who needs it. Ok, let’s see, let’s try using a 911 scenario as an example of what NBC was trying to avoid.
In fact, NBC pointed to a scenario where a lady fell into a pond. Shanelle Anderson was delivering papers and she careened in to a pond in her car, and she was panicked. She called 911 on her cell, but guess what? “We can’t find you” was the response the operator gave her. Result? She died.
Let’s say that Blake and I were having a stroll out on the streets of Phoenix. With 911’s old tech, if Blake or myself fell down and seized up, 911 on cell phones would not be able to find either one of us. Results could be tragic. How can we prevent this tragedy like shanelle’s? Let’s try this:
Imagine a 911 app that automatically finds you. Let’s see if the 911 operators with such apps can find you if you call it. With the new tech the FCC is literally forcing the 911 emergency centers to find and use, Blake and I would be able to get to a hospital if one of us fell. Let’s say that I fell while walking to a location. Let’s also pretend that I called 911 while on the way to work because I fell. So I’m totally injured and I call 911 on my cell phone. The goal of new technology is to make 911 operators able to pinpoint your location. So the first thing I would have to say is, “I’m blind, I don’t know where I’m located. I’m dizzy.” What I would also say is that I am injured and in pain, etc. If 911 continues down its deteriorating path, it would ultimately result in tragedy. I would end up dead or delayed in getting to the hospital.
Now, this is part of the NBC investigative report. Jeff, the reporter in the 911 center, used the phone to dial 911. HE asked the operator, “Where are we and what location am I around?” He was wondering if the operator can pinpoint the absolute accurate location, and guess what? No, the operator couldn’t. This post was indeed inspired by the 911 report I just heard. If you or a loved one is in an emergency situation, or god forbid, there’s a dead body in a ditch, you have to call 911. If it’s on your smartphone, then why is there outdated technology being used so much? Denver had some interesting technology used before, so why is 911 becoming unreliable? FCC is already taking action so we can save lives. I don’t know if Congress would have any idea what importance 911 has for saving lives.
Let’s use another scenario as an example. In this example, a fire is raging through a building. There are women and children in the building, and two of the women are pregnant. You have to call 911, right? Well, with the investigation by NBC and the way the FCC is handling this, let’s use two different scenarios in the example I just gave you. First, with the outdated technology, the building people call 911. “911, what’s your emergency?” You answer, “There’s a fire in the building and I don’t know where I’m located. I think it’s a big building near 1313 West Gate Road.” Ok, so we put the address down here, but let’s say the operator says, “I can’t find you on this map.” Tragedy will result if the operator can’t find you.
In the new tech scenario, you say “There’s a fire at 1313 West Gate Road.” Ok, with the 911 app proposed by FCC, the operator says, “We have you right here. 1313 West Gate Road.” The result? Seconds later, you hear sirens and the firemen arrive to stop the fire. There you have it. You may be the one saving over a hundred lives, including the lives of babies and unborn children. This is really important, and I hope all of us may read this post and see how the investigative report can help us all realize that some things in 911 emergency systems are a bit out of date. If anyone has any idea how to improve your city or town’s 911 system, do comment here. IF there are already improvements, you have something to say. Perhaps you can comment and tell me how this is going.

Author: denverqueen

My name is Beth. I'm blind from birth and enjoy the blogging atmosphere. I am a creative person, a musician, a writer, etc. This is me. Take it or leave it.

4 thoughts on “When you Call 911, … on your cell phone, …”

  1. Here in Australia if you need emergency services you call 000. but if you need emergency services on your mobile, particularly if you are lost somewhere in an area that has poor mobile phone coverage, the number used is 112.

    I know this probably doesn’t help much but I thought I’d add that here anyway.


  2. That’s weird. I say, Kyle, the U.S. has at least better EMS systems than most countries. Not trying to say Australia is bad, but if you got injured here, you’d be ok if you call the emergency systems here. Antigua’s EMS system, for one, is pretty delayed, and that could mean a life is lost. I so wish there was more EMS systems around the world that would act when a life is in danger. Good point, Kyle, about the Aussie EMS systems. Maybe you should do a post about how it works, and how reliable it is.


  3. I’m not all that good at posting about something like that but i’ll say this. We’ve got a real issue with our ambulance system and the target time for ambulances to arrive is 15-16 minutes.
    I hate the thought of calling an ambulance in case the dispatch is bungled because there was one guy who died while waiting for an ambulance after suffering a heart attack while playing indoor socar or something and it took 23 minutes for an ambulance to arrive even though there were people there who were trying to revive him but that’s unacceptable for an ambulance response time.


  4. Kyle, try less than a minute to respond to a heart issue like that. In the United States, we have ambulance response times of less than sixty seconds, and paramedics would get you in less than a minute if it’s really lifethreatening.


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