Spot LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Globalstar Inc. and leader in personal satellite messaging and emergency notification technologies, today announced that SPOT messenger devices, including SPOT Satellite GPS Messenger and SPOT Connect, have initiated more than 1,500 emergency rescues worldwide. Many of these rescues resulted in lives being saved both on land and at sea. Today’s announcement comes at the company’s four year anniversary since launching the world’s first satellite messenger product, the SPOT Personal Tracker.
SPOT provides connectivity to adventurists, travelers, weekend warriors and workers when spending time outdoors or traveling in remote areas. SPOT allows users to check-in and share their locations with their contacts back home. In life-threatening emergencies, users can send SOS messages with their GPS location to the GEOS International Emergency Response Coordination Center (IERCC). Because SPOT uses 100% satellite technology, it works off-the-grid beyond the range of cell phone towers and VHF radio.
“SPOT devices can take the search out of search and rescue,” said Russell Gubele, President and Command Officer of Mountain Wave Search and Rescue near Mount Hood, Oregon. “Being notified of an emergency with the location coordinates allows us to conduct our rescue efforts extremely efficiently saving valuable time and resources. As a result, more people are rescued from often life-threatening situations – saving lives, time and money.”
Of the 1,500-plus rescues that have taken place in 105 countries, 55 percent were in the United States. California, Colorado, Utah, Alaska and Florida are the states with the highest number of SPOT SOS activations. Canada accounted for 22 percent of the overall rescues launched by SPOT devices. This year, rescue officials have responded to 546 SPOT-initiated requests of which 402 were land-based, 117 were at sea and 27 were aviation related.
SPOT Rescue Highlights (2007-2011):
- Four fishermen were rescued from their sinking vessel by the US Coast Guard 20 miles off the coast of Charleston, South Carolina.
- A Scout troop leader was crushed by a falling horse in Mount Hood National Forest and airlifted to safety by the National Guard.
- A downed motorcyclist suffering compound fractures was air lifted to a nearby hospital from a desolate California highway.
- Two stranded climbers were rescued by helicopter from the 3,567 meter-high (11,703 feet) peak on Mount Goodsir in Yoho National Park, British Columbia.
- The US Coast Guard rescued two people after their plane suffered a hard emergency landing on an uninhabited island southeast of Cordova, Alaska.
- An Arkansas photographer with a broken pelvis, collar bone and ankle was rescued from a steep ravine after falling 30 feet in Ozark National Forest.
- A backcountry skier was located and rescued after being trapped at high elevation in Norway during a severe winter storm.
- In Nevada, a man working alone was injured and trapped under heavy machinery. He was extricated and transported by helicopter to a nearby hospital.
- A 20 year-old college student was rescued after falling 200 feet in Rocky Mountain National Park.
- A hiker suffering a severe medical emergency was rescued in Australia and transported to the nearest medical facility for surgery.
Upon receiving an SOS message, GEOS immediately verifies the incident and notifies the appropriate authorities including Search and Rescue, the US Coast Guard, Royal Canadian Mounted Police, Highway Patrol, State Emergency Management centers and International Agencies. Each year, hundreds of hikers, snowmobilers, boaters, pilots, skiers, remote workers and motorists receive necessary aid from professional rescue personnel who otherwise may not know of the situation or the victim’s location.
Rocky Henderson of Portland Mountain Rescue said, “SPOT not only makes things easier for us, I believe it also helps prevent unnecessary search and rescue missions from happening. Being able to let friends and family know that you are okay is a big deal.”
Spot LLC recommends being equipped with the proper knowledge, skills and gear like the SPOT Messenger to help prepare for outdoor activity. Research weather conditions, bring food and water, wear proper clothing and share trip details with others before leaving. For more information on outdoor preparedness and SPOT Messenger products and services visit findmeSPOT.com /Prepared.
Read complete SPOT rescues stories at www.findmeSPOT.com/en/spotemergency.