When every second counts…

By admin
March 12, 2018


Clearly marked mailbox or building numbers can save your life.

By Jim Pollard, AMR Central MS Public Affairs Manager

Planning a spring home or lawn improvement project? American Medical Response urges home and business owners not to forget to refurbish address numbers so that they are clearly visible from the street by day and night.

“There’s safety in numbers.” With a new spin on that old saying, AMR, a leading medical transportation provider in the U.S., implores families and businesses to include improvements to mailbox addresses and building numbers into any spring fix-up plans.

“Even with GPS, mailbox markings and building numbers are vital to ambulance crews, fire departments and police responding to your emergency,” said Stan Alford, AMR Central Mississippi operations manager. “A mailbox or building address that’s easy to see from the road by day or night can be a lifesaving landmark. An added perk, utility companies, delivery services and repair companies will also save time getting to you. While you are sprucing up the rest of your home, spring is a great time to improve the visibility of your mailbox address and building numbers as well.”

Tips to help public safety responders find your house or other building:

  • Replace or repaint faded mailbox addresses and building numbers.
  • Use numbers and letters with a color that contrasts with the background they’re placed against.
  • Use numbers and letters that reflect emergency vehicles’ headlights and spotlights.
  • Numbers and letters should be at least four inches tall.
  • Place building numbers where they won’t be blocked by trees, shrubs, hanging baskets, chimes or other objects.
  • If your home or other building is on a corner, post numbers facing both streets.
  • Do not rely solely on a house or building number painted on the curb or located on a low sign on the lawn. Also post those numbers over the doorway or elsewhere on the building. Parked vehicles, tall grass, leaves and even running water can obstruct rescuers’ view of curb numbers and signs at ground level.

If you have a mailbox:

  • Put your family’s last name and street address on it.
  • Mark mailboxes on both sides because rescuers might not come from the same direction as your mail carrier.
  • If you have flowering plants around your mailbox, make sure they don’t grow up and obstruct view of the name and address.
  • Trim flowers around your mailbox and cut any nearby tall weeds and grass so they don’t block the view of the address.
Attractive mailbox, but no address or name. Could an emergency vehicle find you?

Attractive mailbox, but no address or name. Could an emergency vehicle find you?

Alford said, “If your building number is hard to spot or the mailbox is poorly marked, your rescuers may take longer to reach you. In a life-threatening emergency, every second is precious to a patient’s survival. Bottom line: Your rescuers can’t help you until they find you. Spending just a few dollars to punch up the visibility of your mailbox or building address numbers could be the most valuable renovation you’ll ever make!

American Medical Response is America’s leading provider of medical transportation with sites in 36 states ­and the District of Columbia. Operating in 17 Mississippi counties, AMR companies are the state’s busiest ambulance services. For more information about AMR, visit www.amr. 

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