‘Yellow Dot’ program seeks to save lives

Published 10:59 pm Thursday, August 11, 2011

The Troy Woman’s Club is participating in the “Yellow Dot Program” and is encouraging others to consider doing the same.

Detective Michael O’Hara of the Troy Police Department set up shop Thursday at the Courtyard and took photographs of the club members who wanted to participate in the program. He and his wife, Kassie, assisted them with completing the necessary forms and then put the yellow dots on the back windshields of their cars.

O’Hara said the Yellow Dot Program is the joint effort of citizens and first responders working together to preserve the “Golden Hour” of emergency care.

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“The Yellow Dot Program was created to assist citizens during automobile accidents when they might not be able to communicate for themselves,” O’Hara said. “The one hour following an injury is often critical. And, there are times when an accident victim cannot communicate for himself or herself. That’s when the Yellow Dot is so important.” A first responder, who is knowledgeable of the Yellow Dot Program, will know to look in the glove compartment of the vehicle to find information about the victim that can be critical during that first hour.

The information packet will include a photograph of the person, which will be used for identification, their name, address, the phone number of the person to contact in case of an emergency, medical history, allergies, medications and dosage taken and name of personal physician and preferred hospital.

“Without this information available at the site of the accident, valuable time can be lost while waiting to get this vital information,” O’Hara said.

Also, there are times when an accident occurs and there is no one around to identify the victim so it takes time to notify family members.

A Yellow Dot on the back windshield of a vehicle can make a difference when an accident occurs and participation in the program is simple and it is free.

Ann McSwean, Troy Woman’s Club president, said she was only recently made aware of the Yellow Dot Program and its benefits.

“Detective O’Hara came to our last club meeting and told us about the Yellow Dot Program and how important it can be when an automobile accident happens,” McSwean said. “He came back Thursday to take our pictures and get us involved in the program.”

McSwean said the club members realize the value of the Yellow Dot Program and are proud to be able to be a part of making the program known in the Pike County area.

The Yellow Dot Program is the first of its kinds in Alabama. The program is a cooperative effort among the law enforcement officers, emergency medical services, fire departments and senior centers.

“We do make the program available at senior centers but the Yellow Dot Program is for all ages,” O’Hara said. “Anyone can be involved in a vehicle accident so the information the Yellow Dot Program provides can be of great importance no matter the age.

“So, we encourage Pike County citizens to signup today for them and their families.”

Those who are interested in participating in the Yellow Dot Program may sign up at the sponsoring Pike County Sheriff’s Department, the Troy Police Department, the Troy Fire Department, the Troy University Police Department and the Brundidge Police Department. ADECA/LETS is also a sponsor of the program.