SAN DIEGO (July 12, 2010) – With summer in full swing and record-breaking temperatures on the East Coast, MIR3℠—the innovator of real-time Intelligent Notification and response technology—is urging city and government officials to review community notification processes to ensure residents young and old are kept informed and healthy during the sweltering summer months ahead.
The elderly, the very young, and people with mental illnesses or chronic disease are at the highest risk to suffer heat-related issues. Due to this month’s record-breaking temperatures blanketing the East Coast, seven deaths have already been reported in areas including Philadelphia, Baltimore and suburban Detroit. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (a customer of MIR3) reports that for nearly in a span of 25 years, excessive heat exposure has caused 8,015 deaths in the United States—an average of 276 deaths a year. In fact, the CDC indicates more people in the U.S. have died from extreme heat than from hurricanes, lightning, tornadoes, floods, and earthquakes combined.
“Two-way notification and response technology enables critical communication from city officials to hundreds of residents or first responders at once during dangerous temperature spikes,” said Robert Fink, vice president of platform technologies at MIR3. “Using such technology can be life-saving, and we urge government officials to assess their communication practices this summer. MIR3 works with a variety of top organizations each day, such as the CDC and ImpactWeather to enable advanced, two-way communication across multiple devices for health and weather-related needs.”
In order to minimize heat-related health issues during the summer months, MIR3 experts offer the following recommendations to ensure residential health and safety:
- Daily Automated Phone Calls—During days of extreme heat, an automated phone call can be initiated to a designated list of citizens who are at a high-heat risk (such as the elderly), to ensure proper precautions are being taken to keep cool and hydrated. If there is no answer, another automated phone call can be initiated to the person’s emergency contact so that they can take appropriate action to ensure the person’s safety. Two-way response options can be incorporated so notification recipients can verify their safety or the need for further assistance.
- Severe Temperature Alerts & Advice—When excessive heat is forecast for more than 24 hours, officials can send messages via landline, fax, mobile phone, text message, and e-mail, to provide up-to-the-minute alerts about regional forecasts and humidity expectations. Messages can also be integrated with links to news stories, tips for staying indoors and hydrated, and directions to designated cooling centers such as libraries and community centers.
- Encouraging Precursor Registration—In anticipation of future heat waves over the late Summer and early Fall months, city officials are encouraged to incentivize residents to verify or update contact information through a specialized online portal, ensuring effective communication to the appropriate numbers and devices during critical situations. Incentives may include a $5 discount off monthly electricity or water bills, a chance to win a $100 grocery card, and more. Officials can also partner with local news stations to help spread the word about the importance of registering for the regional alert system.
- Energy Conservation Reminders—To avoid rolling blackouts, brownouts—or to alert residents in the case of such measures—governments may send automated reminders to residents on how to conserve electricity by limiting the use of major appliances during peak hours, the best times of day to water lawns or use air conditioning, and regional updates as to when and where blackouts may occur. Automatic call bridging to information centers can be incorporated if residents have further questions.
MIR3 has notification technology specialists available to discuss and expand on the above recommendations for this year’s summer season. Please contact Erica McCarthy at (619)234-0345 or firstname.lastname@example.org to speak with an executive.
MIR3, Inc. is the leading developer of intelligent notification and response software, which helps organizations enhance communication abilities, protect assets, and increase operational efficiency. MIR3’s technology enables advanced rapid, two-way mass communication for IT, business continuity, and enterprise operations for more than 85 of the FORTUNE 100 companies, as well as government entities, universities, and companies of all sizes in more than 130 countries. For more information, visit onsolve.com.