911 IS HERE TO HELP US RIGHT? So Why Behind the Curve Technologically?

Written by Angel Rodriguez on February 26, 2015

This morning, as always, my wife was watching “TV” on her ipad as she prepared for the day. I overheard the Rossen Report was on so I began to listen. They were covering the sad story of a woman who drowned in her SUV because 911 could not locate her location. The 911 operator asked several times for her location, she couldn’t find her, and ultimately the woman drowned. My heart goes out to the family of this woman.

This story does bring to light a major issue. Something that I have covered, many times before. 911 response time. 

“When seconds count, the police are minutes away.” 

This is not to take away from our first responders; anyone who is familiar with my work knows that I am a very big supporter of the NYPD, and first responders in general. The work that they do is invaluable, and I do not knock or attack them.

That being said, the police, ambulance, and other rescue services cannot be everywhere all of the time. That’s why I am a firm believer in citizens taking the necessary steps to take care of themselves. If someone is kicking down your door, you don’t want to wait on 911 to arrive.

However, this scenario was quite different, and a gun would not have saved this woman. So it is granted that there are times when we will require assistance. The fact that the FCC rep Rossen spoke to stated that they hope to have a 40% improvement in services, within two years, really raises concerns as to where those services are today.

I send my son home in a cab on occasion, we use Uber at times, and I can see EXACTLY where my son is on his way home. Using his iPhone, I can locate where he is at anytime. When I am going to order food, the services I use, such as grubhub and seamlessweb can determine exactly where I am and recommend restaurants. When I am lost, Google maps can find me, and tell me STEP BY STEP where to go. I have access to all this technology, and I am just a civilian now!

In fact, even when I was serving the nation, we encountered the same types of problems when it came to funding and technology. It seems as if we were always significantly behind the curve. I’m not talking state of the art, I’m talking just barely meeting the current minimum requirements!

Rossen dialed 911 and asked the operator to track his location based on the phone call he made to them, they could not provide the correct address. How is it that our 911 operators are using technology that failed that test, and failed that driver in the SUV? How can they say that they expect a 40% improvement in two years, when the technology exists today? I use this tech to ORDER FOOD! Why can’t they use it to save lives?

Ladies and gentlemen, when it comes to saving lives, bureaucracy and red tape should not be an issue. We know that government moves very slowly, but when it comes to saving lives, this should not be the case. I think I really need to reexamine my bid to run for a public office. These things really have to change.

Thanks to our friends at the Rossen Report for bringing us stories like this one. I was not aware of how bad things actually are, and this is why I felt compelled to share this story! We must all be made aware, and these things need to change. Sooner, not later! Correcting these problems would prevent needless loss of life.

Image: http://cronkitenewsonline.com/2012/07/state-officials-say-seemingly-simple-change-in-911-procedures-is-saving-lives/


Angel is a blogger with appearances on The National Geographic Channel, MTV, HLN, FOX 5, HOT 97 FM, NY1, Bronxnet and many popular online sites. He is a U.S Air Force Veteran, Political Columnist, Musician, MMA Fighter, Foodie, and the Host of The Hidden Report Talk Show. Follow Angel on twitter and most social media via @AngelRdotMe