BENTON, Ark. (KTHV) - First responders do everything they can to arrive at an emergency immediately, but when seconds count, a smartphone app is helping local schools send help even faster.
In March, Grant Steed, a student athlete collapsed at the Benton High School's baseball field. It was a day coaches, administrators, and first responders won't soon forget.
"I got a call from one of the assistant coaches saying we had a student athlete that was down on the ground," recalled T.J. White, an athletic trainer with the Benton School District. "I told him to check his pulse and I was on my way."
A few months after the collapse, Steed is now healthy, thanks to the Rave Panic Button, a fairly new app being used across the state. School employees can activate the app through their phones, which instantly dials 911 while also sending out a notification to anyone on campus who can help.
"Sometimes calls to schools can be very confusing because a lot of people listen, a lot of people call in, it causes a lot of confusion and this system cuts through all that," said Chief Kirk Lane with the Benton Police Department.
Before emergency personnel arrived, coaches were already giving Steed CPR and helping him out.
Lane said the app helps make the situation easier for anyone who may respond.
"You're already responding before you really know what's going on," he said. "You have a general area and dispatch fine tunes that for us and makes our response that much more."
On Monday, the dispatchers who responded to the call, the coaches who stepped in, and Kevin Chastain with the Benton School District were honored for their quick thinking and use of this life saving app.
"It shouldn't have to take away from the heroes of that day that actually saved that child, but it should add to it," Lane said of the app. "And it should add to the protection of this school district."
Steed's coaches are thankful that after 51 days of recovering, he is back on the field again and enjoying the game of baseball.
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