First responder training focuses on combat veterans' issues | Principals get police radios for faster communication | Callers ask dispatchers to help them get through corn maze
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November 12, 2014
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First responder training focuses on combat veterans' issues
The First Responder Initiative has trained more than 5,000 first responders and others to interact with combat veterans who may have post-traumatic stress disorder or a traumatic brain injury, whether they are colleagues or someone requesting emergency help. White Plains, N.Y., Public Safety Commissioner David Chong said the training gives first responders more information and tools to mitigate problems, while offering outreach to combat veterans. (11/10)
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Principals get police radios for faster communication
Three school principals in Mansfield, Ohio, will wear police radios in an effort to provide more direct communication with first responders during a crisis. Police Chief Ken Coontz said time will be saved because the principals will bypass 9-1-1 dispatchers and speak directly to police officers. News Journal (Mansfield, Ohio) (tiered subscription model) (11/7)
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Policy Pulse
9-1-1 tax issue to be decided by Ky. Supreme Court
The Kentucky Supreme Court will decide if Campbell County's $45 per unit 9-1-1 property tax, which replaces a $3 per month landline fee, is constitutional. The tax is being challenged by the Greater Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky Apartment Association, but dispatch center Executive Director Dale Edmondson said it accounts for 80% of the center's budget and solves a projected deficit problem. The Cincinnati Enquirer (tiered subscription model) (11/10)
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First responders are unhappy with 9-1-1 board decision
Public-safety agencies have objected to a move by Wisconsin's Dane County to replace a 9-1-1 center board with an advisory commission. First responders say they will have less authority over public-safety decisions and that it may cause municipalities that use the consolidated dispatch center to contract with other communities. Wisconsin State Journal (Madison) (11/8)
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Innovation Insights
Cockroach "biobots" paired with electronics to aid rescue missions
(Science Picture Co)
Cockroaches turned into "biobots" are the vehicles for miniature backpacks full of sensors to detect disaster victims in rubble. Researchers at North Carolina State University are using the bugs and their ability to squeeze into tiny spaces to detect the sounds of people who require rescue but may not be found by other means. Stuff (New Zealand)/Fairfax Media Australia (11/10)
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Calif. district installs high-tech kiosks
A California school district plans to install 90 touch-screen kiosks in December that will act as high-tech bulletin boards, displaying information and photos, and that enhance security by notifying police if a gunshot is detected in the building. The company, SkoolLive, plans to install 1,500 of the free kiosks in schools nationwide before the start of the next school year. The Desert Sun (Palm Springs, Calif.) (tiered subscription model) (11/9)
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Progress lies not in enhancing what is, but in advancing toward what will be."
-- Kahlil Gibran,
Lebanese artist, poet and writer
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