Like most of southern Ontario, the Municipality of Brighton was involved in a significant weather event on December 22-25, 2022. During this storm, emergency services were involved in several calls, to accidents where locating people was difficult. Therefore, we would like to make sure that residents are aware of the What Three Words App.
How does what three words work?
When directing first responders to your location in an emergency, three words may prove to be lifesaving. The Municipality of Brighton is encouraging people to download the what3words app, which uses an innovative grid-based address system to help first responders pinpoint a caller’s exact location and reach them with minimal delay.
what3words is being adopted by emergency services around the world as a tool to dispatch first responders to the precise location of a caller in need of help. Every 3-metre square in the world has been given a unique combination of three words: a what3words address that never changes. For example, ///plopped.legions.dogged will deliver you to Presqu’ile Point Lighthouse in Brighton.
The app works both on- and offline, with the offline functionality making it ideal for use in rural areas that might have a poor internet connection, such as remote nature areas that are enjoyed by hikers and tourists. All the app requires to display a what3words address is a GPS signal, with a phone’s location services switched on and a clear line of sight to the sky for a GPS lock.
The free what3words app can be downloaded from app stores for iOS and Android. In addition to the app, people can use the online map.
Mayor Brian Ostrander endorses the use of this technology to increase safety during significant weather events and accidents.
“During the recent snowstorm that closed the 401 and many other roadways in our area, emergency services used equipment to search car-by-car to ensure that stranded travellers were able to be brought to one of the emergency shelters opened across Northumberland, some stranded travellers were difficult to find because of low visibility. Thankfully there were no serious injuries nor any fatalities in our area because of the storm. Emergency services highly recommends downloading the “what3words” app to your mobile device, this app will help rescue personnel locate you within one metre anywhere on the planet should you become stranded during times of low visibility or if you are in a remote location – I now have it on my phone, just in case!”