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CodeRED technology helps locate missing Indiana runaways within minutes

The CodeRED emergency notification system uses advanced geo-targeting technology to provide the most relevant information to communities everywhere. It was this technology that helped the Daviess County Sheriff’s Office and Office of Emergency Management located two missing teenage runaways in less than two minutes on April 2.

According to Paul Goss, Daviess County Director of Emergency Management, a 14-year-old girl didn’t go home on the school bus and was seen in the vicinity with a juvenile male. The County’s 911 dispatch center requested a CodeRED notification be launched to seek the public’s help in locating the missing teens.

After “pinging” the girl’s cell phone to determine her last known location, the decision was made to use the CodeRED system’s geographic targeting interface and strategically notify residents within a 3-mile radius of the projected area of where the runaways were thought to be located.

According to Goss, 1 minute and 52 seconds had passed since the calls were delivered to the intended area before they got a promising lead. A man who had received the CodeRED notification reached Sheriff Jerry Harbstreit, directly on his cell phone, with information that he had seen the teens and provided their location.

Within 20 minutes, the runaways were reunited with their families. “It’s a great example of how the system can be used. This probably saved a lot of heartache for the families,” Sheriff Harbstreit said.

“We like to think we can go off of TV and radio to notify people, but this is more personal and pinpointed. Using CodeRED gave our community situational awareness they wouldn’t have had otherwise,” Goss said.

Daviess County Board of Commissioners has been using the CodeRED system for more than two years. They also use CodeRED Weather Warning technology to automatically alert residents and businesses of severe weather including tornadoes, severe thunderstorms and flash floods through telephone calls, text messages and emails.