Knowing where you stand - Metro US

Knowing where you stand

In an emergency on unfamiliar Calgary roads or pathways, how would you describe your location to 911 so emergency responders could find you with ease?

A notice of motion by Ward 12 Ald. Ric McIver for city administration to bring back a report on the cost and implementation of a system to intermittently mark city roads and pathways with GIS proximity markers will go before city council on Monday, and it comes in response to discussion he’s had with 911 responders.

“When people phone 911, many, many times they give very poor descriptions of where the incident has occurred,” said McIver.

Easing the amount of time emergency crews search for vague locations, whether on Deerfoot trail or on city pathways, will improve service levels, and probably save lives, McIver said.

City manager of public safety communication Curtis Brochu agrees a system that helps those in crisis easily identify their location would have significant benefits. Brochu said it could be applied to major roadways and pathways, including the city’s ring road, providing what he calls a ‘verifiable address’, which would be mapped out by the city.

“People will be able to identify their locations easily, which will then speed up the system response. We’ll be able to verify where they are and get emergency services on they way to them in a much quicker manner,” said Brochu.

McIver estimates the entire project could cost $100,000.

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