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In an effort to improve emergency response times and enhance service to residents, the Missouri City Police Department has begun live-streaming 911 emergency calls directly to officers in the field, in real time. This new technology, called Live911, allows officers to hear the caller’s actual words and voice, providing a sense of urgency, details that might not be shared otherwise, and immediate updates on the situation. The officer not only hears the incoming emergency, but also can see the caller’s location on a map, providing a head start to first responders by eliminating inherent dispatching delays.
The Missouri City Police Department is the first police agency in Texas to use the technology.
”Once again, the Missouri City Police Department has raised the bar for outstanding customer service by thinking outside of the box,” said City Manager Charles Jackson. “This Live911 system will provide our officers with real-time information that can help save lives and improve citizen and officer safety. This is a win-win for everyone involved.”
Live911 closes the time gap between when 911 calls are received to when officers on patrol are dispatched, allowing officers to hear incoming 911 emergency calls in their geographical area. Live911 allows the officer to obtain more information for devising the appropriate response plan – including use of de-escalation skills – providing better service to the community. The technology was developed by HigherGround, Inc., a Canoga Park, Calif.-based software provider.
“With 24 years of experience in public safety, HigherGround takes pride in creating mission-critical solutions that become game changers,” said HigherGround President and CEO Terry Ryan. “Live911 will reduce response times, increase situational awareness for officers, and enhance their ability to resolve issues in the safest and most effective manner.”
MCPD Captain Brandon Harris said he is excited about Live911’s potential as a dual-purpose public safety tool. “We’re always looking for ways to improve services for our citizens and to improve officer safety,” he said. “With Live911, we can do both, because HigherGround developed this software with lower response times and officer safety in mind.”
Capt. Harris said MCPD first discovered the system nearly a year ago. “When we heard about it, we said, ‘We want this!’ It took about eight months from the time we put the ball in motion and secured the funding until now.” Capt. Harris said he is looking forward to the program’s success and expansion.