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Public Safety Organizations Support FCC Rule to Help Find Wireless 911 Callers

May 19, 2014  - By
Image: GPS World

Many of the nation’s leading public safety and public health organizations submitted comments this week in support of a proposed Federal Communications Commission (FCC) rule to help emergency responders more quickly and accurately find 911 callers using wireless phones from indoor locations.  More than 300 individuals and organizations filed during the initial comment period with the overwhelming majority supporting the FCC proposal.

Among those supporting the rule were many of the largest and most respected organizations representing 911 professionals, police officers, fire fighters, EMS workers, public safety professionals, older Americans, heart attack and Alzheimer’s patients, and the deaf and hard of hearing.  They were joined by hundreds of individual 911 dispatchers and first responders who submitted personal comments through the FCC’s web site or in survey responses that were filed with the FCC.

“The support for this rule across the public safety and public communities is truly breathtaking,” said Jamie Barnett, director of the Find Me 911 Coalition and former chief of the FCC’s Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau. “These organizations are on the front lines of emergency response, and they know that lives are being lost every day because 911 professionals cannot quickly find indoor callers using wireless phones.  The urgency of this rulemaking is unquestionable, and we commend Chairman Wheeler and the other commissioners for their leadership by taking fast action on it.”

According to the FCC’s estimates, at least 10,000 lives a year could be saved by improvements in response time through the FCC’s proposed rule. All of the comments submitted are online.

Find Me 911 is an effort supported by more than 200,000 individuals, as well as national and local organizations. The individuals and organizations represent a broad range of 911 operators and first responders — emergency medical services personnel, fire fighters and police. Find Me 911 seeks to ensure that the FCC moves forward quickly to establish a reasonable, measurable level of location accuracy for emergency calls made indoors, enabling first responders to locate emergency calls from wireless phones from all locations rapidly and efficiently.

Among the organizations filing joint or individual comments in support of the FCC’s proposed rule were:

  • Law Enforcement
  • International Association of Chiefs of Police
  • National Sheriffs’ Association
  • Fire Fighters
  • International Association of Fire Fighters
  • International Association of Fire Chiefs
  • Emergency Medical Professionals
  • National Association of State Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Officials
  • National Association of EMS Physicians
  • National Association of EMTs
  • National EMS Management Association
  • American College of Emergency Physicians
  • 9-1-1 Professionals
  • National Association of State 911 Administrators
  • National Emergency Number Association
  • Association of Public Safety Communications Officials
  • Texas 9-1-1 Alliance
  • Texas Commission on State Emergency Communications
  • [Texas] Municipal Emergency Communication Districts Association
  • San Francisco Department of Emergency Management
  • Nebraska Public Safety Commission
  • Older Americans
  • AARP
  • Alliance for Retired Americans
  • Public Health
  • Alzheimer’s Association
  • American Heart Association
  • Public Safety
  • National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners
  • National Public Safety Telecommunications Council
  • Deaf and Hard of Hearing
  • Telecommunications for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing
  • National Association of the Deaf
  • Association of Late-Deafened Adults
  • Cerebral Palsy and Deaf Organization
  • California Coalition of Agencies Serving the Deaf and Hard of Hearing

Deaf and Hard of Hearing Consumer Advocacy Network

Technology Access Program, Gallaudet University


2 Comments on "Public Safety Organizations Support FCC Rule to Help Find Wireless 911 Callers"

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  1. William Slodysko says:

    While the greater precision of indoor location data is a laudable pursuit, it is worth noting that Jamie Barnett, the Director of Find Me 911 is an Attorney at Venable LLC. Venable LLC represents True Position, a potential vendor of indoor location data.

  2. Walter Greene says:

    A summary of what the rule says might be in order.