New apps allow able community members to respond to nearby emergencies

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — The City of Richmond is hoping two smartphone apps will get everyone in the community involved in saving lives.

The PulsePoint Respond app allows individuals certified in CPR to be notified when someone nearby is in need of assistance. The app is linked to the city’s 911 center. When an emergency call is placed, a notification is sent out through PulsePoint.

The goal is for PulsePoint to allow victims to get the critical care they need in the first few minutes after a heart attack. Richmond Mayor Dwight C. Jones said this app doesn’t replace local first responders.

“We have some of the greatest first responders in the world,” said Mayor Jones.

But the mayor also added, “They can’t be everywhere at the same time.”

The average response time for EMS is six minutes, and health officials said it is the first few seconds that are the most critical in saving a life.

The second app, PulsePoint AED, allows the public to log AED (Automated External Defibrillator) locations so one can be located in the case of an emergency.

Users can snap a photo of the AED, describe the location and the information will be stored and sent for Richmond Fire Department officials to verify.

City officials are urging all residents who are CPR certified to download both apps. They are also asking for  residents who aren’t certified to sign up for a CPR class.

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