New smartphone app helps Brampton Fire find victims in an emergency


Published September 2, 2022 at 10:26 am

Brampton Fire and Emergency Services have a new tool to help locate residents during an emergency thanks to a new smartphone app.

The app is called what3words, which has divided every square inch of planet earth into 3m squares.

Each square has its own unique three word address, not unlike GPS coordinates, allowing users to find and share their location with first responders no matter where they are using just three words.

“If someone is in an emergency situation and struggling to describe their location, they can use what3words to provide their location details easily and accurately,” Brampton Fire said in a release.

The mobile app is available for iOS and Android devices and works offline and without cell reception, so users don’t need to use a WiFi connection or mobile data to find their location.

Brampton Fire said the app does not track the location of its users, works even when you don’t have cellular reception, and only requires a GPS signal to pinpoint your location.

What3words is already in use in the UK and South Africa, and while the app has just started to see use in Canada, it has already been credited with assisting emergency crews in two successful rescues of lost hikers in Ontario and Manitoba.

“In each of these instances, what3words made it easy for the emergency services to identify exactly where the incident was, and help was quickly dispatched to its precise location,” Brampton Fire said.

Here are some steps you can take to help get the most accurate what3words location:

  • If it is possible, move to a location where you can get line of sight to the sky.
  • If using the what3words app, you can switch to satellite view and move the highlighted square manually in order to be as close to where you think you are as possible.

You can download the app visit

insauga's Editorial Standards and Policies advertising