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Emergency Location Markers (ELM) on Trails


Original Post
Bryan Dotson · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Nov 2016 · Points: 494

I'm working on the development of trails in the Houston TX area. I'd like to install markers so that, in the event of an incident, a call to 911 can bring emergency services directly to the site. I have not yet found any emergency-specific signage in the area. Some paved trails have mileage markers but many are confusing.
 
The research I've done so far indicates there are local systems (like the green Dallas Parks sign below) and the US National Grid system (blue signs below). I'm checking with local EMS and 911 systems to see if they recognize the national grid coordinates.
 
I'd appreciate comments from those who have worked directly with the advocacy and development of ELM in other areas. Specifically, any feedback on the choice between a local system (e.g. Dallas) versus the US National Grid system versus other?? would be very helpful at this stage. Also, experience working through the issues in an area with a large number of overlapping jurisdictions (we have cities, counties, precincts, MUDs, drainage districts..) will apply directly to my effort.

Thank you.

ROBERT FAIKS · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Aug 2018 · Points: 0

I have been looking into this also for a different application. On the beaches of North Carolina's Outer Banks, they have 100,000+ tourists all with their cell phones. The Fire Marshall says 8 of 9 emergency calls come on a cell and locating the emergency is not easy. They are on the beach or in a home that they can't even recall the street name. So far I have found what you have.

If you come across a preferred solution, I would love to hear it and as I work on this I will post back to you. I'm surprised that this has not been solved somewhere.

Bryan Dotson · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Nov 2016 · Points: 494

Robert, thanks for making contact.  I've gotten feedback from some other forums I posted to and clearly the first step is to understand the local situation.  From what I can tell, some areas can track cell phone location but others can't.  I'm in a major metropolitan area with a lot of different jurisdictions and I have not yet been able to talk to someone who understands how 911 response works around here.  I do have anecdotes that suggest our 911 cannot detect cell phone location closer than the tower the call is routing through.  

As I develop this I'll post my findings.

ROBERT FAIKS · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Aug 2018 · Points: 0

To track down the people that matter, I started with the county's emergency management department that then directed me to the Fire Marshall. In our county, he handles the 911 center. Most public employees are more than helpful and will get you to the right person.

Joe Glawson · · Unknown Hometown · Joined 20 days ago · Points: 0

Check out the following links...probably help you out quite a bit. Minnesota has done the entire state...ELM markers everywhere.

https://usngcenter.org/portfolio-item/elm-system/

http://www.mngeo.state.mn.us/USNG/maps.html

ROBERT FAIKS · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Aug 2018 · Points: 0

Now I need to find out how EMS uses the sign information in the 9-1-1 system. I think I'll call the fire marshal in a smaller Minnesota town. Won't help to put up the sign if 911 doesn't know what to do with the info. I use an app, "Map my Hike", which uses my GPS to keep track. They should incorporate this into their app.

Thanks for the update.

Joe Glawson · · Unknown Hometown · Joined 20 days ago · Points: 0

Following link will probably be of interest as well...pretty cool app and runs on most...if not all newer smartphones...

https://usngcenter.org/portfolio-item/mobile-app/

ROBERT FAIKS · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Aug 2018 · Points: 0

so cool. Accurate. It can tell whether I am at the front door or the back door.

Joe Glawson · · Unknown Hometown · Joined 20 days ago · Points: 0

Also runs on tablets as well if it has a GPS chip...forgot to add that on the previous post...and the really cool part is Google Earth accepts the USNG format and will zoom to the location provided...noticed on the numbers tho...that it has to be 8 digits instead of 12...see screen capture provided...

I.E. - 85917546 (So...in other words it would look like the screen capture provided and will work)

But...if you input the following example USNG location (Which is much more accurate) it will give you an error if using Google Earth...11TNN859141754603
 

Joe Glawson · · Unknown Hometown · Joined 20 days ago · Points: 0

Here's a USNG map for the USA in case anybody was looking for it...

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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