Marathon County Uniform Addressing

Why can’t GPS (Global Positioning Systems) solve this problem?

It’s important to remember that many of the technologies we see on TV or in the movies do not often accurately reflect the current state of the art.

Global Positioning System (GPS) relies on 24 Earth orbiting satellites and high-frequency radio waves. A GPS receiver, like the one in our mobile phones, can locate four or more of these satellites with these radio waves, figure out the distance of each, and deduce your location through trilateration. For trilateration to work, though, it must have a clear line of sight to these four or more satellites. Obstructions (such as in a building) or natural or man-made barriers can completely block or minimize the effectiveness.  

In addition, GPSs can be off from time to time. With 10 existing address grids (featuring similar and some nearly identical addresses), GPS users and emergency services can sometimes be directed to the wrong location.

The Uniform Addressing System will give each location its own unique, six-digit address, which will be unmistakable for another, aiding Marathon County emergency services in their goal to provide the RIGHT SERVICE to the RIGHT PLACE at the RIGHT TIME.

The effectiveness of GPS is still reliant upon the quality of address data. This project aims to have accurate address data.

At the Marathon County E911 dispatch center, about 70% of actual legitimate 911 calls are made with cell phones, but close to 80% of all wireless 911 calls received are dialed by accident.

Why can’t GPS (Global Positioning Systems) solve this problem?