When disaster strikes, first responders from local, state and federal jurisdictions are called into service. Knowing who is who on the scene is critical — making secure, verifiable identity credentials are essential to an effective response.

Now there is a secure identity card, including biometrics, called the First Responder Authentication Credential (FRAC) solution. It gives emergency management agencies the ability to issue and manage first responder smart identity cards that can be electronically verified on site through an integrated, flexible, scalable and reliable system.

Few first responder scenarios are simple. Most require multiple responses. Even a simple single vehicle accident in the suburbs can require multiple responders:
• Local police
• Sheriff (depending upon the location)
• Ambulance (Emergency Medical Services – EMS)
• Fire

Large incidents such as an airplane crash, a large fire, or a terrorist incident can require a major commitment of multiple first responders over a large operational area:
• Local police (multiple jurisdictions)
• Sheriff (multiple jurisdictions)
• Ambulance (multiple jurisdictions)
• Fire (multiple companies and multiple jurisdictions)
• State police
• State Emergency Management Agency
• Federal Emergency Management Agency
• National Guard

Many states and larger cities have created state and local centers to share information and intelligence within their jurisdictions as well as with the federal government. The Department of Homeland Security, through the Office of Intelligence and Analysis, provides personnel with operational and intelligence skills to the centers.

On the technology side, comprehensive interoperability, mobile data, public warning and vehicular lighting systems help first responders take control of mission-critical assets and events when seconds count. Local and state government officials and public safety leaders can rapidly alert, notify and communicate with citizens during any situation with comprehensive indoor, outdoor and personal alerting systems.