New invention seeks to help first responders save lives

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — A tragedy has become the motivation for two Middle Tennessee paramedics.

Best friends saw a need and developed a lighting system that helps guide first responders to hard-to-find places.

It all started years ago when Johnathan Harrison was called in to help a toddler who couldn’t breathe.

“A two-year-old whose address they couldn’t find,” said Danny Cupples, Harrison’s best friend and 33-year-old intensive care paramedic. “They searched and searched. They see this row of mailboxes with the correct number but they couldn’t find the correct house and when they did it was too late. He said it really pissed him off.

Danny Cupples has been a paramedic for over three decades, so he knows what it’s like to race against time in an emergency.

He says there is no time for error to get to the right place.

“One of the biggest concerns we’ve had in these 33 years of my career is finding people,” Cupples explained. “You would think today that with a GPS, especially that we have on our phone and on the computer, we could reach you directly, but we cannot.”

That’s why Danny and his best friend Johnathan, a retired paramedic who now lives in Tulsa, came up with this solution: a flashing light you can turn on after calling 911.

“It’s like an LED light that you buy at Lowe’s. What makes it different is that it’s connected to our app that goes on our phone,” Cupples explained. “It’s called ‘The 911 Locator.’ You download the free app. It costs nothing.”

A beacon of light literally guiding first responders to where they need to be.

“We had a prototype in Oklahoma where Johnathan’s mom fell and got hurt,” Cupples said. “He said to 911, ‘Listen, I’ve got this light flashing on my porch. My house is hard to find. Tell the EMS guys to look for the locator. When they got there, they were amazed. They could see this light from half a mile away and drove home.

You must have wifi for the lighting system to work, but they are working on releasing an alternative option. Click here for more.