Remembering 9/11 – Essential First Responder Devices

As we continue to recognize 9/11, a time of remembrance and gratitude for those who selflessly put their lives on the line for others should be top-of-mind. Many great people stepped up to help others in need, and many of them perished for their courageous efforts. From responding to medical emergencies, natural disasters, to the unthinkable acts taken against a country, first responders must be ready to handle any situation and are often times looked to for guidance and direction during times of distress. In a lot of cases, first responders do not know exactly what they will face but must be prepared for the worst. No first responder would be able to perform their duty without special tools and equipment to help them along the way. Mr. Electric® salutes the heroes who put themselves in front of others when danger arises and takes a look at the electronic tools that make first responders the best around.

The Siren

Emergency vehicles such as ambulances, fire trucks and police cars use sirens to warn the public of their presence. Sirens allow emergency vehicles to be heard before being seen allowing motorist and pedestrians to react in enough time so they do not impede the first responders.

The Radio

Radios allow for a picture to be painted of a situation before first responders arrive on scene. They can also be used to tell first responders of impending dangers and possible alternative routes that would be useful to get them to the needed area quicker. The purpose of the radio is, of course, communication. All first responder agencies involved can go to the same channel and effectively communicate, allowing everyone to be on the same page. Clear, concise communication can cut down on the havoc and chaos that can be created during crisis situations.


Paramedics often use defibrillators on patients who are suffering from cardiac dysrhythmias, ventricular fibrillation or pulseless ventricular tachycardia. Defibrillators deliver an electrical energy to the heart allowing for a normal rhythm to be reestablished. These electrical devices are small and portable, allowing them to be stored in vehicles and even planes, ready to be used in a moments notice.

Electronic Locator Beacon

There are several types of locator beacons that serve a variety of purposes. First responders, especially firefighters, use electronic locator beacons that flash a light and emit a noise so they can be more-easily located in times of distress or heavily smoke-filled area.

The Flashlight

The flashlight is one piece of emergency equipment that should not be overlooked. Whether police, medical or fire rescue, every first responder requires the use of a flashlight to help him or her perform their job. Advances in lighting have allowed for greater power and light from smaller bulbs. Halogen lights are common in first responder flashlights. Being able to spot danger, find lost or injured people is one of the most important things first responders need to do and flashlights help that happen.

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