June 17, 2013
Emergency Management Relying More on Smartphone technology During This year's Tornado Seasons to Save Lives
Solitude, Indiana - Increasingly, Emergency Management Agencies are relying on the latest technology to provide real-time information to people that are in the direct path of danger. The technology, being driven forward by technology experts at Ping4 Inc., allows users to get emergency messages based on where the users are in real time with their smart phone. This is a leap forward from older technologies that use permanent addresses to issue alerts.
This technology can be critical when tornados strike. A tornado’s ability to switch course and direction makes them dangerous and unpredictable and makes this technology extraordinarily useful in places like tornado alley. Three weeks into the current tornado season, Ping4 Inc.’s smartphone app - ping4alerts! - has had more than 300,000 impressions throughout the Tornado and Dixie Alley regions of the country. Ping4alerts! is a free app used by Emergency Management Agencies to alert residents of an impending danger like being in the direct path of a tornado at the moment, whether they are in the grocery store or in the back yard.
Ping4 Inc.’s patent pending software allows Emergency Management officials to be able to send life-saving information to users within a highly select geographic area and because the
geographic area is not pre-determined, it can be unique to each alert. In Solitude, Indiana,
Ping4 Inc.’s alert saved Richard Pepper’s life when a tornado ripped through his town. Richard Pepper heard the alert on his phone and ran from his backyard just seconds before a tree crashed down where he had been standing. “That’s a life-saving app,” said Richard Pepper.
"The development of these advanced alerting technologies is critically important," said Greg
Carbin with the NOAA National Weather Service's Storm Prediction Center. "The National
Weather Service relies on innovative companies to rapidly disseminate hazardous weather
information to a wide range of people. These types of value-added services are designed to
provide as much actionable information as possible."
The ping4alerts! system is being used by national, state and local agencies from New England to California. “We are pleased to … offer this important and meaningful smartphone application,” said Chief Heather Coogan, of the Littleton Police Department in Colorado. “It integrates easily with our existing technology and greatly increases our ability to reach people quickly.” Most recently the
Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency used the ping4alerts! app to update residents about the Boston Marathon bombing manhunt.Peak tornado season stretches from April to June in Tornado and Dixie Alleys. 2011marked the deadliest year for tornados since 1953, with 1,609 confirmed tornados killing more than 500 people. 1,150 tornados are predicted for the 2013 season.
Ping4 Inc., based in New Hampshire, is an innovative software communications company
developing advanced mobile alerts for smartphones. Using the latest in push notification
technology, the Ping4alerts! app enables Emergency Management officials to deliver real-time, location-based, multimedia alerts to any smartphone, anywhere. Using patent-pending
technology, ping4alerts! helps public officials notify any smartphone user with the app within a customized geographic area of crucial, time-sensitive information with text, pictures, audio,
links and maps, including extreme weather events and fast-moving, dangerous situations. For
more information, go to www.ping4.com.