Although not an official Lockport, IL Police Department program quite yet, the new Lockport Police Department Care Trak program is already making headlines for itself.
A caring Lockport Police Officer, Jeren Szmergalski, was instrumental in the two-year process of bringing this extremely helpful program to the city for the benefit of its disabled citizens and their caregivers.
Having dealt in the past with Lockport disabled citizens, or visiting individuals that had wandered off due to confusion, Alzheimers, or other illnesses ... Officer Szmergalski knew that the Care Trak program that was implemented in neighboring cities could benefit Lockport's residents as well.
Officer Szmergalski knew time is of the essence when someone wanders off and is lost. But if no program is in place, or no information has been provided prior to that disappearance, police need to gather important personal information regarding the lost person at the time of the reported disappearance and before a search can begin. When in place, the Care Trak program will eliminate that need and resulting time-delay.
The Lockport Women's Club and the local Walmart generously assisted in funding monies needed to purchase the equipment for the Lockport Police Department Care Trak program. Certification has been earned by 5 Lockport police officers at the present time. The department plans to have every officer certified at some point in the near future.
Residents and caregivers in Lockport, IL will be able to apply to take part in this new program soon. Applications will include the need for a personal history of the individual that wanders. The wandering individual in question must require 24-hour care, have problems with communicating, and suffer from either Down Syndrome, Autism, Dementia, or a traumatic brain injury. Physical identifiers (tatoos, scars, piercings), medicines being taken, actual medical information/history, and the caregiver(s) information will be needed upon application also.
A required purchase of a patient package, at a cost of $246, includes a tracking band that will surround the ankle or wrist of the named wanderer. The band contains a transmitter that police can track through the frequency emitted. A beeping sound can be heard by police on their tracking equipment, if the wanderer is within a one-mile radius of their last known location. A police search is conducted for any lost person on foot first. If that search is unsuccessful, the tracking equipment is moved to a squad car.
The Care Trak program has tracked approximately 2,000 persons reported missing. Its success rate has been phenomenal, with every one of those wanderers found within 30 minutes of first being reported.
If you are a Lockport, IL resident or caregiver interested in finding out more about the new Care Trak program, please contact the Lockport Police Department located at: 1212 S Farrell Rd, Lockport, IL. The non-emergency number for the Lockport Police Department is: (815) 838-2131. You can visit their website at: http://www.lockportpolice.info for more information also.
It should be noted that the nearby communities of Crest Hill, IL and Romeoville, IL will have certified officers and a Care Trak program up and running within a few months. The actual name of the programs in these cities, and Lockport as well, may be changed in the future to avoid confusion with the Care Trak company itself.