After the terrorist attacks in France intensified, mobile applications played a very important role in mobilizing people and sharing information, as was the case with Facebook. For this reason, the country’s Ministry of Interior has just launched an iPhone application with the function of alerting and guiding citizens in cases of public alerts.
It is not just that France is experiencing this climate of care. The army has been seen in public places for years, and the French often use this type of tool en masse as a form of collective protection.
The app is called SAIP, initials Système d’Alerte et d’Information des Populations (alert and information system for the population) and does just that: in addition to giving the alert when something happens close to where the person is, it also tells what to do in different cases.
Guidance to the population in these cases is very important. The authorities want to prevent, for example, the emergency phone lines from being crowded with people asking what’s going on and that is why the app suggests that in such cases the person never calls the police, SAMU or firefighters, unless it is really required.
It uses geolocation to determine if the user is in a risk zone. In addition to terrorist attacks, the app also warns of nuclear accidents, leaks of dangerous products, rupture of dams and other types of catastrophes in which the population needs to be warned. It is a direct channel that the government creates with the population, so that the reaction is more efficient in cases of emergency. The idea is to be a complement to other devices that have existed for years, such as sirens and radio.
The app is exclusively for people who live in France or who are visiting the country. It can be downloaded for free from this link and only has versions in French or English.