College Station-based startup ResponderX, Inc. has been selected to participate in the Under Fire Response Innovation Showdown hosted by the Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service (TEEX) Product Development Center on Thursday and Friday of this week. Twenty teams were selected from the applicant pool to provide a six-minute pitch of their product to a panel of judges consisting of leaders in the technology and emergency response professions. The top 10 teams will advance to the second day of the competition, at which participants will have the opportunity to perform a 30-minute demonstration of their products at Brayton Fire Training Field and Disaster City to compete for a cash prize pool donated by event sponsors. Any winnings from the competition would be used by ResponderX to fund additional developmental milestones the company needs to achieve before the product can move to field testing.
ResponderX’s patented TaskForce Tracker system is comprised of a device the size of a deck of cards which is worn on a firefighter’s protective gear and communicates with system computers mounted on fire trucks. These two devices transmit data to a tablet managed by the incident commander or safety officer, which displays each individual firefighter’s exact location on an emergency incident scene. In the event that a responder needs help in a hazardous environment, rescue crews know exactly where to find the downed firefighter, rather than spending precious time searching for him or her. The passively-deployed system tracks firefighters both inside and outside of a structure and collects data on fire conditions to relay back to fire officers outside the hazard zone. There is currently no other device on the market available to emergency responders which is comparable to the TaskForce Tracker system. ResponderX currently has approximately 20 agencies around the country identified as pilot sites, including Bryan Fire Department.
Inspiration for the idea came to company founder and CEO Andrew Jarrett after the 2013 Knights of Columbus Hall fire in Bryan, Texas, which claimed the lives of Bryan Fire Department Lieutenants Eric Wallace and Greg Pickard and severely burned Rickey Mantey and Mitch Moran.
Interested parties may visit www.responderx.com for more information.