The inevitable happens. Someone breaks a leg, suffers a heart attack or faces other serious medical emergencies. When an emergency happens, emergency medical services (EMS) respond to the scene in hopes to save a life. Minutes can make a difference.
What happens when they’re called to a rural country home? Sometimes minutes are lost due to confusing addresses. Without city blocks to guide them to the correct house, it can be a difficult to maneuver to the right place. Minutes can be lost. Valley County is now looking at changing some of those rural addresses for this reason.
A mapping system was implemented in 2006, and the mapping and addressing system is going into place to help enhance 911 services. The data uses a global positioning system (GPS) and the geographic information system (GIS).
The county is now hoping to simplify addresses in hopes of correcting addresses that may be on the wrong side of the road, or perhaps have numbers that are off from the house before or after them.
Some county residents have received notices if their address is off. While odd numbers need to sit on the left side of a street and even numbers on the right, the hope is to change addresses to make locations easier to find. Ambulance drivers, especially drivers new to the area or the job, will be able to locate residents more efficiently.
The county will contact the post office, utilities and other major services for residents that have been flagged. Residents who have been contacted can contact the Valley County Addressing and Planning Office at 228-6222 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.
Residents who didn’t receive a notification will not need to worry about the changes. Those who have received a letter will not need to make any action until they’ve received a final address notification letter.