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Emergency management in your pocket

Wednesday, June 18, 2014 10:57 AM | Deleted user

We recently wrote a blog post about new emergency preparedness apps being launched by John Hopkins, to say that using apps for emergency management is trending would be putting it mildly. These days, there’s an app for everything, for better or for worse.

In our May meeting we discussed business continuity and disaster recovery software and tools; some members of the panel expressed excitement for apps that would soon make BC/DR software available in an app. The idea of having access to information to prepare and respond in an emergency from wherever you are is exciting and valuable in our industry. So, where can you go for mobile emergency management and response? Let’s take a look.

Flashlight apps

We were excited to give out flashlights at the Secure360 Conference this year. It was a great way to meet people, and let’s face it, a flashlight is a valuable tool in an emergency. And, there’s an app for that! It’s so simple that you might not think of it, but being able to turn your smartphone into a light source could make a big difference during an emergency, even if it just allows you to find you matches or better flashlight.

First aid apps

Quick, what are the rules of cardiopulmonary resuscitation? The American Red Cross has a first aid app that will walk you through everyday first aid scenarios in case you can’t remember. The app also offers safety tips, is fully integrated with 911 so you can easily call for additional help and the preloaded information means that you’ll have access to it even without an internet connection.

The University of Minnesota’s School of Public Health has a psychological first aid app that helps those previously trained in psychological first aid respond to disaster survivors and prepare for potential disasters.

FEMA apps

FEMA’s app includes disaster safety tips as well as an interactive emergency kit list, information about emergency meeting places including maps with open shelter information. The app also allows you to report disasters and submit photos, information that will be shared with others.

Weather apps

You probably all have weather apps on your phones already. In our April meeting we talked about how important these apps can be for keeping everyone informed and for alerts when severe weather is approaching. Because weather apps are commonly used, they can be a valuable resource in keeping you and employees informed.

The world is mobile, and more than ever we expect to be able to find information on the go. Emergencies cannot be planned for, but chances are that you’ll have a mobile device on you when they happen, aren’t bad. Mobile apps cannot replace training, preparedness and experience, but they can be useful tools in an emergency.

The above-mentioned apps are just a few of the emergency management apps out there. Are you currently using any of these or other emergency management apps? Which ones would you recommend?

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