What 3 words, eh? You are alone and need aid urgently. Luckily you have your smartphone and contact Triple Zero (Australia). Now, using only three words, could you describe exactly where you are – within a couple of metres?
Fortuitously, Cornelia Gratzer was not alone when hiking on a remote part of Flinders Island, Tasmania. She slipped and broke an ankle atop a windy cliff-face. Two companions walked for 30 minutes searching for phone coverage to call 000 for help. They got through eventually but could not describe the precise location where their friend fell. So Triple 000 operators told the friends how to download ‘What3Words’. Using GPS satellites, the app then directed rescuers to the exact 3m x 3m spot where Ms. Gratzer lay.
///murky.founding.spoonfuls were the three words Cornelia’s friends gave rescuers. We’ll bet you’re thinking: “Oh come on – how could that possibly work?” Well, you see, Ambulance Tasmania is the first rescue service in Australia to use this incredible app called ‘What3Words’. (See blog editor’s comment below)
Overseas, hundreds of millions are using ‘What3Words’ in 42 languages or dialects. So, to better understand how ‘What3Words’ works, please spend some time reviewing these instructions. If like us, you prefer to read from hard copy, there is a download button beside each page. Or you can print the 13 pages together after using the one download button at the end. The first page looks like this:
Quote: “Now you need only three words to find or share an exact location anywhere in the world. Use it to find an apartment entrance, station exit, picnic spot, or parking space. ‘What3Words’ is a really simple way to talk about locations.”
“We have assigned each 3m square in the world a unique 3-word address that will never change. For example, /// filled.count.soap marks the exact entrance to ‘What3Words’ London headquarters. Three-word addresses are easier to say, remember, and share, and are as accurate as GPS coordinates. Nor do you need the internet. For instance, 51.520847, -0.19552100 is the same as /// filled.count.soap. Which would you rather be saying or typing?”
Blog Editor Gordon Campbell comments:
I am a huge convert to the power of “What3Words”. No wonder hundreds of millions of people overseas have had their lives improved. For instance, it takes so much less time to locate injured persons or find lost children. And there are so many other uses.
“Ambulance Tasmania does not pay any fees to “What3Words”, nor is there any requirement for us to promote this application under any arrangement. Ambulance Tasmania uses multiple external applications, including the ‘Emergency App’, standard Global Position system location devices (such as mobile phones), and is always open to using innovative technology to assist us to provide a high level of patient care in an efficient time frame. I’m sure there will be more applications in the future that will also be utilised by Ambulance Tasmania to assist us locate and care for patients. In this case, it was “What3Words”, which recently, we have also had a success story locating another patient using this application”.
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