Cumberland County Sheriff's Department
Since 2006, the Cumberland County Sheriff's Department and the Cumberland County Office on aging & Disabled, are pleased to announce that they partnered their agencies and ARC providing the 'Project Lifesaver Program' for the purpose of providing service to citizens in need.
In April of 1999, Col. J.E. Saunders of the Chesapeake Sheriff’s Department established Project Lifesaver after noticing a dramatic increase in the number of wandering people, particularly with Alzheimer’s, Down Syndrome and Autism. Project Lifesaver protects wandering patients and gives peace of mind to caregivers, families and communities.
Project Lifesaver is an innovative rapid response program aiding victims and families suffering from Alzheimer‘s disease and related disorders such as Down Syndrome and Autism. By forming partnerships with local law enforcement and public safety organizations, Project Lifesaver deploys specially trained teams with the most reliable technology available to quickly locate and return wandering adults and children to their families and caregivers.
Over 5,000,200 people in the USA have Alzheimer’s. That number will triple by 2050. Well over 50% of these people wander and become lost. A lost person with Alzheimer’s or other dementia represents a critical emergency. They are unaware of their situation. Nearly half of them will die and many can become injured or fall victim to predators if they are not located within 24 hours.
How Project Llifsaver Works
Project Lifesaver relies on proven radio technology and a specially trained search and rescue teams. People who are part of the Project Lifesaver program wear a personalized wristband that emits a tracking signal. When caregivers notify the local Project Lifesaver agency that the person is missing, a search and rescue team responds to the wanderer’s area and starts searching with the mobile locator tracking system. Search times have been reduced from hours and days to minutes.
Example of Wristband
Within five years of Project Lifesaver’s creation, the program is now operating in 35 states and has rescued 905 wandering individuals within an average of 20 minutes. Nationally, an average search and rescue operation last nine hours and costs about $1,500.00 an hour.
Members of the Project Lifesaver team are specially trained, not only in use of the electronic tracking equipment, but especially in the methods to communicate with a person who has Alzheimer‘s disease or related disorder.
Project Lifesaver depends upon the support of the community. Project Lifesaver’s goal is to provide the benefits of the program to all in need regardless of their ability to pay.
For more information about Project Lifesaver please contact the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Department at (856) 451-4449 ext/100, or the Office on Aging Disabled - Barbara Nedohon at (856) 453-2221.
Visit Project Lifesaver International's web site for more information on this vital service.