A unified front of the nation's leading public safety and public health organizations submitted comments this week in support of a proposed Federal Communications Commission (FCC) rule to help emergency responders more quickly and accurately find 911 callers using wireless phones from indoor locations. More than 300 individuals and organizations filed during the initial comment period with the overwhelming majority supporting the FCC proposal.
Among those supporting the rule were many of the largest and most respected organizations representing 911 professionals, police officers, firefighters, EMS workers, public safety professionals, older Americans, heart attack and Alzheimer's patients, and the deaf and hard of hearing. They were joined by hundreds of individual 911 dispatchers and first responders who submitted personal comments through the FCC's website or in survey responses that were filed with the FCC.
Among the organizations filing joint or individual comments in support of the FCC's proposed rule were the International Association of Chiefs of Police and the National Sheriffs' Association.
"The support for this rule across the public safety and public communities is truly breathtaking," said Jamie Barnett, director of the Find Me 911 Coalition and former chief of the FCC's Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau. "These organizations are on the front lines of emergency response, and they know that lives are being lost every day because 911 professionals cannot quickly find indoor callers using wireless phones. The urgency of this rulemaking is unquestionable, and we commend Chairman Wheeler and the other commissioners for their leadership by taking fast action on it."
According to the FCC's estimates, at least 10,000 lives a year could be saved by improvements in response time through the FCC's proposed rule. All of the comments submitted can be found at http://apps.fcc.gov/ecfs/comment_search/execute?proceeding=07-114
About the Find Me 911 Coalition
Find Me 911 is an effort supported by more than 200,000 individuals, as well as national and local organizations. The individuals and organizations represent a broad range of 911 operators and first responders – emergency medical services personnel, firefighters and police. Find Me 911 seeks to ensure that the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) move forward quickly to establish a reasonable, measurable level of location accuracy for emergency calls made indoors, enabling first responders to locate emergency calls from wireless phones from all locations rapidly and efficiently.