Dixie County was the first county in Florida to announce the availability of Smart911 during 2011. The Smart911 service allows residents to create a free Safety Profile online that will provide 9-1-1 operators the critical information they require during emergency situations.
This information will automatically be made available to 9-1-1 when the user places an emergency call, thereby helping 9-1-1 to speed up their call and offer a much more rapid and accurate emergency response.
In a statement, Dixie County 9-1-1 Coordinator Chuck Elton, said, "This service allows us to have the important details we need in order to provide the fastest and most accurate response, immediately. We have been actively working to educate the community about this free service and encourage everyone to logon and create a Safety Profile for their household."
After Dixie County, a number of other counties across Florida such as Hamilton, Lafayette, Gilchrist, Taylor, Lake, Levy, Union and Collier have also joined the rapidly expanding national network.
Celeste Widman of the Withlacoochee Gulf Area Chamber of Commerce said, "We believe Smart911 is of great value to the families we serve and we are happy to do what we can to make sure they know about it and use it. The 9-1-1 and emergency response agencies do so much to serve our citizens day in and day out and Smart911 can only enhance and improve the service they provide."
Some of the other Florida organizations providing their support to Smart911 include the Animal Hospital, Levy Animal Clinic, Hometown Realty of North Florida, Physician's Regional Medical Center of Naples, the Dixie County Library, Rotary Club of Trenton, and several additional Chambers of Commerce including Dixie County, Gilchrist County, Greater Chiefland and Williston.
June McMahon, president of the Florida Association of the Deaf, said, "Smart911 will benefit the deaf and hard of hearing community as it will help emergency personnel to be aware that the person has a hearing loss. We like that each citizen can choose what information they want to include. It is also a great benefit that their Safety Profile is available regardless of their location. Because 10 counties in Florida have Smart911, if one of our families had an emergency while in another county, their profile would be available at that 9-1-1 agency. It's peace of mind."