How Can SMS Communication Help in Saving Lives?

Text messages, without a doubt, are becoming common more and more in our routine lives. SMS is progressively used in emergencies to assist, safeguard, and support the health of those at the core of the catastrophe as well as to assist family and friends to ensure their security. SMS applications have to play a significant part in every scenario of emergency, both before, during, or after an emergency situation.

Before Disaster Strikes

Being a part of the warning systems before catastrophe strikes, SMS has clear potential. For instance, a few modern smoke alarms, like Firetext Smoke Alarm, are now fitted with SIM cards that allow them to send an emergency alert to the specified list of people directly. These messages can also be customized perfectly to allow users to see exactly where a fire is taking place by identifying a specific device activated. Even when store owners and landowners are away from their belongings, SMS allows them to stay calm and to know that they can act immediately, which can save potential damage of property and a great amount of money, of course.

Organizations like Australia's Early Warning Network also use SMS to alert groups of people about natural disasters, regardless of where they are. Specifically, individuals residing in rural regions can be immediately alerted to fire and flood threats on their mobile phones, warning against rapid evacuation, or attempting to protect their property against harm.

During Emergency Situation

There is also considerable potential for SMS support in an emergency situation. The utilization of SMS is enormous when communication and coordination are mandatory or if it has to be done on a massive scale. Organizations are, for example, able to include emergency SMS into their safety action plans, alerting immediately necessary persons to nature and what they need to survive during a disaster. Thus, hundreds of thousands of individuals can literally be approached in a brief period of time, so that they can respond appropriately.

Some educational institutions, i.e. schools, colleges, and universities, have already implemented an SMS emergency alert system to alert registered users in the case of an emergency across campus. These kinds of precautions are essential in planning such events and may increase the safety of recipients significantly.

After Disaster

The information must often be spread rapidly following a large-scale catastrophe. The status and location of survivors both are crucial to coordinate restoration efforts both to the public and to the non-citizens in the affected area and to spread safety information. Of course, SMS is essential for people who want to get in touch with their family and friends. However, other apps are available too, such as government hotlines. These hotlines can give accessible information for those after a catastrophe who would usually not have phone lines. Contact details or evacuation details, for instance, can be asked, and representatives then respond with a message being sent in a jiffy.

Not only this but SMS notifications are also used to encourage funding to recover from disasters. In the US, for instance, the Red Cross has established numbers that accept donations via SMS.

Establishment of Emergency SMS

The emergency SMS system has already been implemented effectively in many countries, i.e. UK - enabling higher access of emergency SMS services for deaf, hard of hearing as well as impaired persons. It is the system that enables persons with registered mobile phones to use the service by just sending an emergency text message to a designated or particular emergency number. This message is then immediately transmitted to emergency service with an answer returned to the original mobile phone via SMS. This enables people to get access to a critical service when they are not able to call in an emergency.

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