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Fargo-Moorhead Fire Departments Unveil Emergency App - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Fargo-Moorhead Fire Departments Unveil Emergency App

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A new smart phone application will enable people in the community to help out in emergency situations around the Fargo-Moorhead area. The fire departments in Fargo and Moorhead unveiled the app in a joint news conference Monday.

The app is called PulsePoint. Once you download the app, you then select your location and mark certain emergencies you'd like to be notified about. Users who are trained in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) are notified if someone nearby is having a cardiac emergency and may require CPR.  If you decide to allow push notifications, you can also choose to be alerted during fire alarms, motor vehicle crashes, or medical emergencies, just to name a few.

As long as the GPS on your smart phone is turned on, and you are within a quarter-mile of the emergency, you will receive a notification. When you get an alert, you also have the option to see how many automated external defibrillators (AED) are in the area and where they are located.

The fire departments say the quicker victims are able to get help in an emergency, the better.  They say the app will give users CPR instructions and other directions similar to those that dispatchers at Red River Regional Dispatch would give over the phone if you were to call 911. The app follows guidelines recommended by the American Heart Association regarding hands-only CPR.

Although not everyone may feel comfortable helping in an emergency situation, emergency responders say any type of assistance before they arrive could make a huge difference in an emergency situation.

"With only one quarter of all cardiac arrests victims receiving CPR, PulsePoint increases the odds that CPR and defibrillation will be provided even before emergency crews arrive on scene. Improving the chances of survival after a cardiac arrest," explains  Fargo Fire Chief Steve Dirksen.

The local PulsePoint App is similar to an app developed in California. The fire departments say the California app cost $25,000, but the F-M version was built by the IT departments locally, making it less expensive.  The app is free to users. Links to the app in the Apple iPhone App Store and Google Play store can be found to the right of this story.

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