In the past 10 years, mobile data usage has increased 100 times. There are more ways than ever for people to stay connected. From students relying on the internet at home for learning, to millions of people working remotely at full capacity, to securing safe rides homes, the need for reliable, consistent, high-speed internet is at an all-time high. Connectivity is needed in communities across the country – rural, urban, and suburban alike.
Among those who most need fast, reliable high-speed internet are first responders and public safety professionals who keep our communities safe and secure. The facts bear this out: 80 percent of 911 calls originate from mobile devices, which rely on a network of infrastructure – towers, small cells and fiber.
The need for reliable connectivity goes beyond a 911 call. First responders need the ability to share data with dispatchers like the exact location of the call, provide medical history to EMS, and properly communicate to other emergency services like fire and police departments. Further, reliable wireless coverage allows us to connect with loved ones in emergency situations, providing peace of mind. Healthcare depends on 5G even at home by supporting monitoring and prevention devices and for telehealth appointments. An estimated 10,000 lives could be saved each year if emergency response times are reduced by one minute.
In Dallas, police are fielding solutions to reduce a recent uptick in response times, and city leadership is proposing to allocate funds to hire more paramedics and increase ambulance availability in an effort to decrease response times. Improving connectivity with innovative solutions powered by 5G is one way that local emergency services can equip themselves to serve their communities better.
Connectivity is critical in an emergency, but also for people to feel secure that they will always have adequate internet services. According to the CDC’s National Health Interview Survey as of 2021, 68 percent of adults and 79 percent of children live in wireless-only households. These numbers continue to grow as more and more people are switching to completely wireless networks for all their devices.
Together with businesses, families, and municipal leaders in Dallas, shared communications infrastructure companies like Crown Castle will keep innovating and building the infrastructure that makes our communities safer, better places to live, from Dallas and beyond.