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October 17, 2012
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News for emergency communications and response professionals

  Making the Call 
  • Minneapolis changes 9-1-1 policy after workplace shooting
    In the wake of a workplace shooting that left six dead, Minneapolis is changing its 9-1-1 policy after several callers were unable to reach a dispatcher during the emergency. Dispatchers return 9-1-1 calls even if the caller is not connected to an operator, and officials say first responders arrived at the scene of the shooting five minutes after the first call was made to 9-1-1. But under the new policy, calls that are not answered in 10 seconds will trigger a recorded message asking callers to stay on the line if they are able to. WCCO-TV (Minneapolis) (10/10) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Cities turn to 9-1-1 call logs to keep public updated
    Baltimore police have been asked to create an online 9-1-1 call log, and the San Diego Fire-Rescue Department recently launched its own site. Susan Infantino of the San Diego department said the log is needed because handling questions from curious bystanders ties up fire dispatchers, delaying getting rescue crews to the scene and responding to other legitimate callers. The Baltimore Sun (10/15), XETV-TV (San Diego) (10/15) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
  Policy Pulse 
  • NENA, APCO issue guidance for E9-1-1 smartphone apps
    NENA and the Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials have released guidance to help mobile device application developers understand enhanced 9-1-1 systems. The guidance lists five limitations developers should consider, including that only voice and a single reference code of eight to 10 digits can be carried with an E9-1-1 call and that members of the public expect 9-1-1 dispatchers to know their location automatically. Government Security News (10/10) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • New Mich. laws target false reporting of crime
    Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder has signed into law bills outlawing "swatting," which is tricking police into responding to a fake emergency. "Spoofing" technology is used so 9-1-1 calls appear to come from the site of the fake emergency. The laws take effect Jan. 1, and people convicted of false reporting of a crime could be forced to reimburse the government for the cost of responding and might face prison time if someone is hurt in the scheme. (Michigan) (free registration) (10/16) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Innovation Insights 
  • Newtown becomes first Conn. city to adopt Smart9-1-1
    Newtown is the first municipality in Connecticut to join the national Smart9-1-1 safety database, which gives first responders useful information on people who call for help, including location, allergies, disabilities and pre-existing conditions. "What citizens may not realize is that we don't usually have a lot of information when we are responding to a call," police Chief Michael Kehoe said. (10/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Hardware/software package allows secure use of mobile devices
    A new hardware and software bundle from Precise Biometrics and Thursby Software provides secure use of information on iPhones and iPads. The package, which is expected to attract public safety users, allows security authentication using fingerprints, a smart card or both and accommodates multiple users of one device. Urgent Communications (10/11) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
In times of change, learners inherit the earth; while the learned find themselves beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists."
--Eric Hoffer,
American social writer

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