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New service aims to make 9-1-1 calls more efficient

NORWICH (WBNG) — The Chenango County Sheriff’s Office continues upgrades to its dispatch center to answer emergency calls more efficiently.

In September authorities in Chenango County introduced a texting service.

RELATED: You can now text 911 for help in Chenango County

Now along with texting, you’re able to create a profile so the dispatch will now information about if you call during an emergency. It’s through a free service called Smart911.

“It allows the community to go in online on a website. They in-put the profile information they want,” said Chenango County Sheriff Ernest Cutting. “If they have a medical condition or anything that they may want a first responder to know if they’re calling for help.

Cutting said in the past dispatchers were able to see some information when you call from a landline, but not cell phones.

“With cell phones there’s no information so this will allow us to get information to the 9-1-1 center out to the first responders,” said Sheriff Cutting.

About 70% of the calls that come into the Chenango County 9-1-1 center are through cell phones.

You can make a more detailed profile for your home and mobile number by creating a free account.

“If we have a lot of that information already upfront that they put into profile that helps us, shortens the call and helps us get first responders to them faster,” said Chief Dispatcher of the Chenango County Sheriff’s Office A. Wesley Jones.

The more information the better. That includes where you water or gas shut off locations may be at your home in the event of a fire or other emergency situation. If you list someone as an emergency contact and they call on your behalf, your profile will still be able to be tracked during 9-1-1 call.

“Anything we can use to help somebody in an emergency is the information we would like them to put into theit profile,” said Jones who added the database is private and profiles can only be looked at during calls.

Sheriff Cutting recommends creating a profile if you travel to Chenango County often.

Broome County officials say a similar service will be available for residents early in 2019.

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Michael Schwartz

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