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Public Safety Officials Encourage Residents to Sign Up for Free Service That Will Provide Emergency Alerts and More Information to Emergency Responders in the Event of an Emergency.

Public safety officials in Otter Tail County announced today that Smart911 is now available to all individuals. Smart911 is a free service that allows residents and travelers to sign up for notifications sent from state and local public safety authorities and will provide timely and actionable emergency alerts during hazardous situations involving weather, traffic, and other emergencies in real time. Alerts are available via mobile or landline telephone, text, or email message.

“Our move to Smart911 greatly expands on the weather alert and emergency notification options we had with CodeRED,” said Patrick Waletzko, Otter Tail County Emergency Management Director. “It also allows us to take the next step – integrating emergency alerting with 9-1-1 services.”

During the registration process, Smart911 allows individuals to create a Safety Profile for their household that includes any information they will want 9-1-1 and response teams to have in the event of an emergency, such as medical conditions, emergency contacts, and vehicle and pet information. When a Smart911 user makes an emergency call to 9-1-1, their Safety Profile automatically displays to the 9-1-1 call taker.

“The benefits of this information on a 9-1-1 call will be immeasurable,” said Barry Fitzgibbons, Otter Tail County Sheriff. “When you call 9-1-1 it is often the worst of a person’s life, and the Safety Profile will enable us to know exactly where we are going and who we are looking for in a house fire or at the scene of a vehicle accident. It can even ‘speak’ for you when you might be unable.”

Smart911 is available for registration now on the Otter Tail County website, at Smart911, or through the Smart911 mobile application. The CodeRED notification system will be phased out, and Smart911 will be used as the County’s emergency notification system beginning July 1, 2020