RapidSOS Portal: An Emergency Data Platform for the Future

by Hfbtech

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Since our founding 6 years ago, RapidSOS has been dedicated to a life-saving mission: the 9-1-1 data challenge.

Despite the technological advancements in connected devices and applications, the 50-year-old 911 infrastructure only allows for the transfer of 512 bytes of data — less data than the first transatlantic telegram sent over one hundred fifty years ago. This means telecommunicators and first responders manage millions of emergencies every year without any additional data from the field. Providing public safety agencies with more data from the sites of emergencies results in faster, better prepared response, improving emergency outcomes.

Today, RapidSOS is announcing a new step in our vision to make better emergency data available to public safety. We’re introducing RapidSOS Portal, a powerful platform for public safety agencies to manage emergencies with data from the RapidSOS Clearinghouse — a secure, consolidated source for emergency data trusted by over 3,000 agencies nationwideRapidSOS Portal replaces RapidLite and provides a new set of features for responding to emergencies with better data.

One Source for Everything from Location to Rich Additional Data

In 2018, RapidSOS announced a milestone for emergency response in the US. We worked with Apple and Google to make fast, accurate wireless caller location available to any emergency communications center (ECC) in the country, at no cost. To ensure every agency nationwide would be able to access this life-saving data immediately, we released RapidLite as a secure, internet-based tool for telecommunicators to query incoming 9-1-1 calls for location from Google and Apple.

Thousands of agencies across the country have signed up for RapidLite, demonstrating the unprecedented demand for a secure, internet-based tool to access emergency data from the RapidSOS Clearinghouse. These consist of some of the largest public safety agencies nationwide, including the Los Angeles Police Department, the Orleans Parish Department of Public Safety, the Seattle Police Department, and the San Francisco Police Department. RapidLite has already led to success stories where lives were saved because 9-1-1 telecommunicators and first responders had real-time access to emergency data from connected devices.

In Pinellas County, FL, a kayaker capsized in the Gulf while fishing. Due to the heroic work of the 911 dispatcher and rescue crews, and the use of RapidSOS Portal by a supervisor in the center, the kayaker was saved – even after drifting farther out to sea.

Location has always been just the beginning of our vision for an emergency data platform. As more emergency data sources become available through the RapidSOS Clearinghouse, ECCs require more sophisticated tools to manage emergencies based on this data. Transitioning from RapidLite to RapidSOS Portal signifies that the platform is here to stay as an essential emergency response tool for the modern ECC. All agencies using RapidLite will automatically transition to RapidSOS Portal with no action required. Agencies can also access data from the RapidSOS Clearinghouse through integrations with existing public safety software providers. 

RapidSOS Portal offers several unique benefits for ECCs.

  • Immediate access to all data sources: Agencies with RapidSOS Portal can immediately receive access to new data sources available through the RapidSOS Clearinghouse, including Apple, Google, and Uber. We are constantly adding new sources of situational emergency data, most recently partnering with MedicAlert to connect life-saving health data from over ten million members to 9-1-1. 
  • Training and administrator tools: RapidSOS Portal includes new tools for PSAP administrators to manage the use of the tool in their agencies. These include predefined roles for administrators to define policies around data access and other capabilities. We also provide a comprehensive training portal available to all agencies at no cost.
  • Native software integration: The RapidSOS Portal interface can be embedded within existing ECC software through the RapidSOS public safety partner network. Reach out to your vendor to learn more.
  • Additional data sharing: RapidSOS connected device partners now have the option to select and upload sophisticated additional data files (e.g., floor plan data) to share with first responders in an emergency via RapidSOS Portal.
  • Jurisdiction View (coming soon): Jurisdiction View is a free enhancement for RapidSOS Portal that automatically displays data from the RapidSOS Clearinghouse on one map, including accurate location and additional data from sources such as Google and Uber. Agencies will be able to add on this free enhancement to have the ability to manage all emergencies through one single dashboard. Learn more about getting early access here.

Note: All agencies using RapidLite will automatically transition to RapidSOS Portal with no action required. The functionality, user accounts, and agency profile will remain the same.