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Reducing First Responder Collisions in Cities

HAAS Alert fights the national spike in struck-by collisions

Public safety crews responding to emergencies in congested cities face nearly as much risk on the road as they do when they arrive on-scene. For decades, fire crews and first responders have relied on lights and sirens to get the attention of motorists, but statistics show that responders on the road are facing more danger than ever.

Emergency Service Vehicle Incidents (ESVIs) involving First Responders are the second leading cause of US firefighter fatalities, accounting for well over 450 deaths since 1994.¹

NEWCOM works with public safety agencies to implement HAAS Alert’s collision prevention service, SafetyCloud. The service enhances emergency alerting on the road by notifying nearby motorists inside their vehicle that an emergency vehicle is nearby.

Our crews started reporting to us that they were noticing a real difference in driver behavior. It truly was a big ‘aha’ moment when I went out on a run to see the alerts for myself for the first time. I was impressed at the difference in how many drivers were slowing down and moving over."

Sean EganDeputy Fire Chief, DC Fire and EMS Department
Case Study

The HA-5™ (small transponder) connects to the emergency lightbar and device is mounted to the vehicle dashboard. When activated, SafetyCloud delivers real-time digital alerts over cellular networks to nearby approaching civilian motorists. These R2V™ (Responder-to-Vehicle) alerts, are received through navigation apps and connected car systems already in use by hundreds of millions of drivers, including WAZE.

Studies show that digital alerts give drivers more advance warning of emergency vehicles than traditional lights and sirens so that they are more likely to slow down and move over in accordance with road laws.

NEWCOM shares DC Fire and EMS Case Study

‘Preventing Fire Crew Collisions in the Nation’s Capital’


  • District of Columbia’s intricate road system and constant traffic often requires multiple responders to navigate different routes to reach the same destination.
  • Unexpected overlaps and intersections with other responding vehicles are frequent, and carry a heightened risk of collision between emergency vehicles.

  • Given the size of emergency vehicles and the pressure on responders to reach incidents quickly, these collisions can be particularly dangerous and destructive.


  • Over the course of a year on SafetyCloud, DC Fire and EMS Department initiated nearly 444,000 emergency vehicle deployments in response to more than 212,000 911 calls.

  • A detailed analysis of R2R alerting also confirmed that alerting responders of nearby emergency vehicles helped to reduce the risk of those collisions as well.

  • Data revealed that DC Fire and EMS Department apparatus operators reduced their speed by an average of 25% within the first second of receiving an R2R alert.

  • Today, the department’s emergency vehicle specifications now include a requirement that all new emergency vehicles be equipped with SafetyCloud R2R and R2V alerting.

Read the latest update on the State of Maine EMS Connectivity Project.

NEWCOM, Statewide Contractor, leverages HAAS Alert as a solution.

Why contact NEWCOM?

NEWCOM is a trusted, solution provider of HAAS Alert, and is able to answer questions and provide solutions tailored to your technology needs. Partnering with HAAS Alert allows NEWCOM to connect vehicles directly with hazards on the road to make sure everyone gets home safely.

With HAAS Alert, NEWCOM is able to offer safety and peace of mind for first responders, as well as a variety of fleets. Based in the metropolitan Boston area with operations nationwide, our expert team of engineers and trained sales professionals offer turnkey solutions for commercial and public sector markets. We analyze, design, recommend, install, and help manage your systems by raising the bar for the highest standards for customer support. To learn more, visit

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1. Fahy et al., 2017