E-911 Center launches new technology to connect with mobile devices

The City of Winchester Emergency Communications Center (ECC) has implemented a new mapping system and integration with RapidSOS in order to receive more accurate location data for mobile 9-1-1 calls.

Before this new technology, the only location data the City’s Emergency Communications Center would receive when a mobile caller dialed 9-1-1 was caller’s approximate location as provided by a cell tower which may or may not be near the emergency. With the new mapping system and RapidSOS, the location of the caller is more accurate allowing dispatchers to send fire, rescue and/or police services directly to the caller. See the below example.

“With less people utilizing landlines and relying on their mobile devices for communication at home, work and on the go, this service will decrease response times which could drastically improve the outcome of an emergency,” stated Winchester Emergency Communications Director Erin Malloy.

What you need to know:
For this service to work on Apple devices, iOS 12 must be installed.
Android has unlocked the service, but it will take several weeks for it to be working on all phones. No action is required for Android devices.
For Sprint users, the caller must be on a Wi-Fi network for the RapidSOS to work.
This service is available for 9-1-1 callers when they are within Winchester city limits.
No app is needed.

The Winchester ECC purchased the integrated mapping system with a $150,000 grant from the 9-1-1 Services Board. Use of the RapidSOS technology is provided for free.