WASHINGTON (CBSDC/AP) — District of Columbia officials are unveiling a new 911 system for people calling in emergencies.

The Smart911 option, already in place elsewhere in many parts of the country, allows residents to create online profiles about themselves to help emergency officials in their response.

The profiles can include personal information, such as existing medical conditions, allergies or the number of pets in the home, that are automatically displayed to 911 operators only during emergency calls. That way, emergency responders can be better prepared in arriving at a scene.

According to the Smart911 website, the option has been particularly helpful across the country in cases involving senior citizens and people with developmental or physical disabilities.

Mayor Vincent Gray is scheduled to announce the free service Thursday afternoon at the Children’s National Medical Center in northwest Washington. He’s also scheduled to participate in a demonstration.

The Smart911 system is being provided by the Office of Unified Communications.

You can find out very easily if Smart911 is available in your area by clicking here and submitting your zip code.

(TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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