Emergency Response | News

Rave Panic Button App Intended To Speed Emergency Response Time

A company that provides safety and security systems in K-12 and other segments is adding a "panic button" option to its product line. The Rave Panic Button from Rave Mobile Safety is a smartphone app that performs several emergency activities when tapped. It dials 9-1-1; launches a "Smart911" viewer to give first responders information about the caller's physical environment; and notifies school officials, employees and others that an emergency is taking place. The idea is to speed up reaction time by public safety people to minimize the number of victims.

Features include:

  • Direct connection between 9-1-1, emergency responders and the caller;
  • Notification to other on-site personnel that the panic button has been activated; the app can be configured to send users a message the instant the system is used;
  • Automatic display to first responders of data such as caller location, floor plans, emergency exit locations, emergency contacts and security procedures; and
  • Online storage of district emergency response information.

According to the company, the panic button program has been tested out by schools in Michigan, Washington and Massachusetts. For the software to work, school administrators must create a profile through a Web site providing information such as floor plans and locations and other details that would be accessed by first responders in an emergency.

One location where the new program was piloted was Everett Public Schools in Washington. "Rave Panic Button makes it possible for school personnel and all law enforcement and 9-1-1 centers to get the same real-time information and data in an integrated format," said Assistant Superintendent of Teaching and Learning Molly Ringo. "This project brought together school personnel, law enforcement and 9-1-1 centers to collaborate on an effective emergency response system and approach across multiple organizations."

Participating in that pilot was SNOPAC911, the regional public safety communications center that dispatches law enforcement, fire and medical 9-1-1 calls for 37 different Snohomish County jurisdictions. "We are committed to continuing to improve community safety by working in close partnership with school officials and first responders," said Executive Director Kurt Mills. "Rave Panic Button is the only solution we've seen that provides the immediate cross organizational communication needed to enhance our situational awareness and response during a school emergency."

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal and Campus Technology. She can be reached at dian@dischaffhauser.com or on Twitter @schaffhauser.

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