How to save time for your dispatchers and responders
Note: this article appeared in our bi-weekly LinkedIn Newsletter, Evolving Emergencies. Click here to subscribe and follow us on LinkedIn.
Smartphones, smart watches, tablets, and other pieces of modern technology now offer shortcuts to calling 911, making it easier than ever before to reach emergency services. Unfortunately, this has also led to a drastic increase in accidental 911 calls and 911 hangups.
There are 240 million 911 calls per year in the United States, each potentially the worst moment of someone's life. Accidental calls cost valuable time, money, and, potentially lives for emergency personnel and their communities.
We collected and analyzed data from one center that uses Prepared Live to see if our platform helped them address this issue.
Spoiler: it did.
How Prepared Live helps save time on accidental 911 calls
Prepared Live launched in this agency in August of 2021. For this case study, we collected and analyzed data from a three month period in 2021 (pre-Prepared Live) and the same period of 2022 (using Prepared Live).
Across this three month time span in 2021 and 2022, the county received nearly 1,000 hangup calls per three months. In 2021, their dispatchers were forced to send first responders to investigate 75% of these calls, costing an average of 56 minutes per call.
In 2022, however, their dispatchers were able to use Prepared Live functionality to request live video proof of the scene and send outbound “text-from-911” to inform the caller that their goal was to simply confirm their safety. This lead to a staggering 35% drop in the percentage of time first responders were sent to investigate:
First responders investigated 75% of calls in 2021
First responders investigated 40% of calls in 2022
Extrapolated over a full year, Prepared Live functionality used for 911 hangups saves them:
1,500+ man hours responding to non-emergencies (equivalent to 63 days)
It’s important to acknowledge that these numbers don’t only reflect time saved on accidental calls but that they also represent the opportunity cost of spending time on those calls. Every minute that a responder spends investigating someone who hit the wrong button on their smart watch prevents them from focusing on someone who is in desperate need of assistance.
Multiply this time saved across thousands of American cities and you get a sense for the drastic impact that can be made by the widespread adoption of Prepared Live.
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Editor's Note: a version of this article first appeared on the Prepared blog in 2022