Catering Services and police launch ICE packs
An initiative has been launched by a police officer in Pontypridd that will help emergency service workers trace friends and relatives of people in an emergency.
Pc Darren Buckland has introduced ‘In Case of Emergency’ packs which are being given to vulnerable people in the county borough in a partnership with Rhondda Cynon Taf Council.
It is hoped the packs will help to bring an end to the many hours that police spend trying to trace relatives or friends of those who have been involved in incidents.
Each pack is split into two sections: one is carried in a purse and the other is displayed at home. Both carry contact details of a relative or friend of that person who should be called in the event of an emergency.
Thousands of the specially designed packs are being issued by Rhondda Cynon Taf Council’s Community Meals service, which has regular contact with around a thousand of the most vulnerable people across the region.
Pc Darren Buckland, said: “I’ve been in the job for 17 years now and over this time I have spent many hours trying to trace family members and friends of people involved in incidents.
“This initiative could save officers many hours of investigative work, and ultimately help to reunite loved ones in their hour of need,” he added.
A police officer may need to trace a next of kin in many situations as they will deal with crimes, road traffic collisions and also be called to force entry to properties should there be concern for somebody inside.
Initial focus will be on the elderly, but other vulnerable groups could also benefit.
The initiative is being launched in Pontypridd but could be rolled out further afield should the trial prove successful.
Pc Buckland added: “This initiative is an extension to one which encourages people to tap the next of kin into their mobile phones. Throughout Rhondda Cynon Taff, we have a large, elderly population who aren’t as familiar with this type of technology, so this initiative fills that gap.”
Cllr Eudine Hanagan, Rhondda Cynon Taf Council’s Cabinet Member for Education, Skills and Lifelong Learning, said: “Through our Community Meals service, staff have regular contact with some of the most vulnerable residents in the County Borough and I am pleased we will be able to utilise this service to get ICE cards distributed. ICE cards will help the Police in identifying next of kin details quickly which will be of comfort to our residents who will have their loved ones with them as soon as possible in the event of an emergency. We did deliver the scheme a few years ago and are delighted to be able to revive it in partnership with South Wales Police.”