Community Safety and the Power of Preemption

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Four Things No Community Wants to Hear and How to Control the Response through Preemption

  1. Baby in the community pool – not sure if she is breathing!
  2. Someone is in my Condo and I am locked in my bathroom!
  3. My husband is having a heart attack – we are building 3 on the second floor Suite 237!
  4. Active shooter or shooters on the grounds – not sure where!

Today’s technology-driven world can seem to be real time and transparent unless you are the first responder hearing these calls.

Every second matters to the person in trauma and their loved ones. Seconds mean the difference between life and death or recovery and lifelong damage to mind or body.

To the first responders who have committed their lives to those people in crisis, arriving as rapidly as possible without putting additional people at risk, is what they are trained for and dispatched to do.

The first responder has one more critical consideration and that is balancing the speed of the response with the first responder’s safety. If the first responder does not arrive they can’t provide service, so the goal is the most rapid response possible that is safe for all community members including the first responder.

There are things out of our control, weather, animals, random acts and so on.

There are other things every community who shudders at these four messages can control. Examples of what can be controlled are first responder training, equipment (to arrive and to aid those in peril) and Clearing the Way for the first responders with preemption. Preemption manages traffic signals from point of dispatch to the site in crisis, which many communities have already or are in the process of doing.

To aid those in peril and protect first responders the power of preemption needs to go beyond traffic signals to gates at places like airports, schools, apartments, and condos. There is no reason for a first responder to have to look up a combination, find the correct access key or arrange for access. In situations like “active shooter or shooters on the grounds” just leaving the first responder’s vehicle creates a target, as well as slowing down the response. This need for timely unrestricted access is a natural extension of the Envelope of Safety.  Only Tomar Strobecom II and Strobeswitch EVP and access control systems provide complete right-of-way enhancement from station exit, through the traffic control system, beyond access gates, to the crisis, in an integrated, cost-effective system.

With all the things that can’t be controlled bringing the power of preemption to the last few yards separating those in need of aid from those ready to deliver the aid seems at best questionable – since the technology is here and the cost is so low.

The next time you hear one of these four pleas or others that threaten your community support those in need of aid and those delivering that aid. Raise your voice and demand control of preemption and as much safety as possible.

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