KAWARTHA LAKES-If you are out on local trails this long weekend officials are reminding you to download the What3words app.
Kawartha Lakes Fire Rescue Service (KLFRS) along with volunteers from the Kawartha All-Terrain Vehicle Association (KATVA) and Kawartha Off-Road Motorcycle Association (KORMA) are working to enhance trail safety within Kawartha Lakes.
Together, they are installing what3words app reminder signage throughout the expansive Kawartha Lakes trail system to help ensure the safety and well-being of trail users.
The what3words app has gained popularity worldwide for its precise and user-friendly way of pinpointing locations. In an emergency situation, such as an accident or medical incident on a remote trail, knowing and sharing a what3words address can potentially save lives by significantly expediting the response time of first responders.
The what3words app provides a simple way to communicate precise locations. It has divided the world into a grid of 10-foot squares and given each square a unique combination of three random words: a what3words address.
The app is free to download for both iOS and Android devices, and works offline, making it ideal for use in areas with an unreliable data connection, such as hiking trails and campsites. what3words can also be used via an online map at what3words.com.
The partnership between KLFRS and the volunteers from KATVA and KORMA underscores their commitment to public safety. By placing what3words app reminder signage at key points along the trail system, they aim to educate trail users about the importance of having the app and using it when venturing into the great outdoors.
“We are excited to work hand-in-hand with KATVA and KORMA volunteers to make our trails safer for everyone,” said Terry Jones, Fire Chief, Kawartha Lakes Fire Rescue Service. “Our teams have witnessed the positive impact of the what3words app in emergency situations, and we believe it can be a game-changer for our community. With these reminder signs in place, we hope more people will be aware of the app’s capabilities and use it as a vital tool for their outdoor adventures.”
The what3words app reminder signage installation is already underway. The signs will be strategically placed at trailheads, intersections, and other high-traffic areas throughout the Kawartha Lakes trail system and local communities.
“We are proud to collaborate with Kawartha Lakes Fire Rescue Service on this important safety initiative,” said Carolyn Richards, president of KATVA/KORMA. “Our volunteers are deeply invested in the well-being of our community, and we believe that equipping trail users with the what3words app can make our trails safer and more enjoyable for everyone.”
“Every second counts in an emergency and struggling to communicate a location can cost minutes when it matters most. It’s been humbling to hear that our technology has been such a valuable asset to emergency response teams in Kawartha Lakes. Their what3words trail sign initiative is a truly innovative idea and another great example of their commitment to protecting their community,” said Giles Rhys Jones, CMO, what3words.
Trail users and outdoor enthusiasts are encouraged to download the what3words app and to familiarize themselves with how it works before embarking on their next adventure. By using the app and sharing their what3words address, they can ensure a faster response from first responders in case of an emergency.