Applied Research Associates helps first responders with FiRST app

Applied Research Associates' Carl Jerrett recently discussed the ways ARA's First Responder Support Tools app can help first responders.

Recent events like the Boston Marathon bombing have given rise to questions about bombings and ways to detect and prevent these incidents from happening. While bomb detection technology is used at large events and has been successful, it is still difficult to find threats over a sprawled out area.

"The goal of the FiRST app is to be an application that is easily fielded, intuitive enough to require no formal training, and assists responders, emergency managers and security specialists with planning and responding to suspected CBRNE threats," Jerrett said. "The costs of the application have remained very low to not be a barrier in fielding the application."

The FiRST app gives first responders easy access to map-based improvised explosive device standoff distances, along with HAZMAT spill evacuation areas. It is available on Windows, Android and iOS platforms.

Jerrett said the most important aspect of preventing a bombing is vigilance, and that people attending events need to maintain awareness of suspicious activity and alert authorities before an incident can occur.