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Old 01-09-2019, 11:54 AM   #1
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EMS and Cell Phones

My wife and I took a first aid / CPR class. They said you should learn about your cell phone. You may need to put the phone call on speaker, work the flashlight, get or give your GPS location. Also, allowing your phone to give your location when speaking to 911 is something you need to turn on or leave on.

The getting the GPS location was the take away as it works without cell service and is easy.
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Old 01-09-2019, 01:31 PM   #2
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Good advice.

There are a number of us older folks who do not know how to take advantage of all the options on our phones. The ones you list are a good starting point. Most cell phone companies will have local classes available.

While you can turn off the general location function of your cell phone, the 911 location is always on and can not be turned off. One less thing to worry about.

Thanks for the reminder!
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Old 01-15-2019, 05:05 AM   #3
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Don’t depend on any of that really. 97% of the US has access to 911 type services, however there is no standardized level of 911 services. AMOF it’s a pretty safe bet that rural places that a lot of campers favor, barely have 911 services at all! So things such as enhanced 911 (location services) are probably not available. And when you throw cellphones in the mix, there are even fewer services that can offer cellphone location tracking. So in a nut shell YMMV greatly.

If you’re a rural camper get a map of where you’re at. Get yourself a true no frills GPS. Keep it in the camper. Put fresh batteries with it every season. Don’t depend on your phone. We all marvel at these little devices. But trust them too much could get you in a world of crap. Some cellphones don’t have true GPS chips. So if you’re w/o cell service your GPS is not accurate or won’t work at all.
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Old 01-15-2019, 06:42 AM   #4
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Good advice but many of us still use flip phones and live and camp in areas without cell service coverage.


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Old 01-15-2019, 02:02 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by diver165 View Post
If you’re a rural camper get a map of where you’re at. Get yourself a true no frills GPS. Keep it in the camper. Put fresh batteries with it every season. Don’t depend on your phone. We all marvel at these little devices. But trust them too much could get you in a world of crap. Some cellphones don’t have true GPS chips. So if you’re w/o cell service your GPS is not accurate or won’t work at all.
Spot on regarding different types of 911 services. But I'm afraid your other recommendations don't work in this day and age. The number of people who can orient a topo map and identify their position from looking at their surroundings is getting fewer by the day (as old folks die off). And that assumes that you have the correct map that contains your actual location. And don't get me started on the number of people that can correctly read their latitude and longitude from the map.

The number of phones without GPS is also getting fewer and fewer. Many of us may not know how to pull up GPS coordinates on our phones, but it's available on just about all smart phones nowadays. The other nice thing about a smart phone is the ability to show GPS position overlaid directly on Google Maps. Google Maps allows you to download the map in advance so you have full functionality (except for current traffic conditions) without any cell phone service, so it works just as well as a stand-alone GPS with a built-in map display. One less device to keep track of, updated, and charged.

I love paper maps, and often print them out or use pre-printed ones for hiking/camping/road trips. But when I tried to teach orienteering to Scouts (10 years ago) using compass and topo maps, the total confusion on the faces told me that this is not a today's world skill.

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Old 01-15-2019, 02:44 PM   #6
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Spot on regarding different types of 911 services. But I'm afraid your other recommendations don't work in this day and age.
Nah my advice is spot on.

You don’t need a detailed Topo map. But don’t rely on your cellphone as your only means of location and navigation. That’s all I’m saying. The same people you say can’t read a map are the same people that wouldn’t know if they had real GPS chipon the iPhone they’ve had for 10yrs or how to download the appropriate maps.

And I should clarify when I’m talking about a no frills GPS I’m not talking about the ones on your dashboard that say “recalculating...”. LOL I had to reread your reply then it dawned on me what you must be thinking. I’m talking about one that will show GPS coordinates on the fly that seldom need updating if at all.
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Old 01-15-2019, 02:56 PM   #7
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Nah my advice is spot on.

You donít need a detailed Topo map. But donít rely on your cellphone as your only means of location and navigation. Thatís all Iím saying. The same people you say canít read a map are the same people that wouldnít know if they had real GPS on the iPhone theyíve had for 10yrs.
And that is the entire gist of the original post. Learn to use the capabilities of your phone that would be useful in an emergency BEFORE there is an emergency. And, as you pointed out, it is always a great idea to have multiple methods of confirming location.

And if you are in an area with no cell phone service and have an emergency, it's a whole nuther ball game.......
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Old 01-15-2019, 04:00 PM   #8
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And that is the entire gist of the original post. Learn to use the capabilities of your phone that would be useful in an emergency BEFORE there is an emergency. And, as you pointed out, it is always a great idea to have multiple methods of confirming location.

And if you are in an area with no cell phone service and have an emergency, it's a whole nuther ball game.......

Exactly
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Old 01-20-2019, 04:54 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by pgandw View Post
Spot on regarding different types of 911 services. But I'm afraid your other recommendations don't work in this day and age. The number of people who can orient a topo map and identify their position from looking at their surroundings is getting fewer by the day (as old folks die off). And that assumes that you have the correct map that contains your actual location. And don't get me started on the number of people that can correctly read their latitude and longitude from the map.

The number of phones without GPS is also getting fewer and fewer. Many of us may not know how to pull up GPS coordinates on our phones, but it's available on just about all smart phones nowadays. The other nice thing about a smart phone is the ability to show GPS position overlaid directly on Google Maps. Google Maps allows you to download the map in advance so you have full functionality (except for current traffic conditions) without any cell phone service, so it works just as well as a stand-alone GPS with a built-in map display. One less device to keep track of, updated, and charged.

I love paper maps, and often print them out or use pre-printed ones for hiking/camping/road trips. But when I tried to teach orienteering to Scouts (10 years ago) using compass and topo maps, the total confusion on the faces told me that this is not a today's world skill.

keeping it simple
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I would love to learn this. I take a gps with me and usually hike alone. It has saved me a few times when I got lost. I hope it never breaks at a critical time. I have been fascinated by people who could use a map. It seems like just trees in every direction. Don't know how people find their location on a map.
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Old 01-20-2019, 05:13 PM   #10
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Always be prepared to talk to the dispatcher and convey your location. The cell system has come a ,long way but it is far from perfect. The quality of the cell system varies widely throughout the countries as does the capabilities of the dispatch centers. I worked in this industry for 30 years, representing public safety agencies, and have seen remarkable improvements, but I also know our shortcomings. Never rely on the systems to save you. Talk to the dispatcher and convey your location and needs.
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