More than 5,000 bystanders and passengers have been killed and tens of thousands have been injured in police car chases over the past 35 years, research says.
Now a former sheriff has created PursuitAlert, which aims to help the public avoid police chases by alerting drivers within a three-mile radius.The moment an officer begins to chase down a subject, they turn on a device in their cruiser and it will send an alert to the app. Tim Morgan, former Pickens County Assistant Sheriff in South Carolina, and Trish Morgan worked on the technology with Pickens Innovation following the death of a man killed during an incident, reports WYFF4.
Brent Winchester was traveling to work in 2008 when a car being chased by police lost control and spun into oncoming traffic – Winchester was killed in the accident.
‘I was in law enforcement for 37 years and one of the most difficult incidents I had to deal with was the death of an innocent victim in a high-speed police pursuit,’ Morgan told
ABC News WLOS.
After retiring from the Pickens County Sheriff’s Office, Morgan started designing PursuitAlert. Police officers simply flip the switch on the device and a push alter will be sent out to PursuitAlert app owners in the vicinity of the chase. Another notification will be sent out the chase is no longer a threat such as ‘proceed with caution’. ‘We’re sending a notification out to all the sheriff’s in the nation that new technology is on the market,’ said Morgan.
The PursuitAlert technology will cost around $350 for each police car, but Morgan hopes the free app will be out in the next few months –as it is currently pending federal approval.