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What are your three words? App rolled out in Norfolk to help police pinpoint rural locations

PUBLISHED: 06:30 26 June 2019

An app now being rolled out by Norfolk police could help officers reach people in insolated parts of the country quicker. Picture: Archant

An app now being rolled out by Norfolk police could help officers reach people in insolated parts of the country quicker. Picture: Archant

Archant 2018

An app now being rolled out by Norfolk police could help officers reach people in insolated parts of the country quicker.

Chief Constable Simon Bailey at NOSCAS 2018. PIC: Neil PerryChief Constable Simon Bailey at NOSCAS 2018. PIC: Neil Perry

The app, what3words, divides the world into a grid of three-metre squares, which are converted from coordinators into a three-word address.

Police gave an example of exists/roof/plod, which refers to a precise point next to a road on the Norfolk Broads.

It is hoped the app will make it easier and quicker for people across Norfolk to share a precise location in an emergency, helping police better serve their rural communities.

Norfolk's chief constable Simon Bailey said: "Our rural communities told us about this remarkable technology that can pinpoint a precise location.

Norfolk Police and Crime Commisssioner Lorne Green. Picture: ANTONY KELLYNorfolk Police and Crime Commisssioner Lorne Green. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

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"We know it can be difficult for people living and working in the more isolated parts of Norfolk to give us their exact location and this technology could be groundbreaking in helping us to continue to better serve and support our communities.

"It's also another example of our commitment to the ongoing partnership between the very best in technology and modern policing. The three-word address given for an area can accurately pinpoint a caller or incident so officers can then be dispatched to the precise location.

Norfolk's police and crime commissioner, Lorne Green, said: "When I was elected as the PCC, I pledged to drive forward Norfolk's approach to tackling rural crime and this is an important step in using 21st century technology to detect, prevent and disrupt criminality in rural areas and ensure officers can reach people quicker."

Photo: James Bass.Photo: James Bass.

Chris Sheldrick the founder of what3words, said: "It troubles me to think that if an emergency had happened, we would have struggled to tell emergency services where help was needed fast enough to avoid extensive damage.

"It's incredible to see UK forces like Norfolk embrace technology to respond effectively and quickly to people in need."

The what3words system, which is available in more than 35 languages, has been added to Norfolk Constabulary's Computer system and will go live in the next month.

The app is available for iPhone and Android users for free.

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