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San Marcos Installing GPS Traffic Light System To Improve Emergency Response Times
The fire and transportation departments for the City of San Marcos have launched a new traffic signal system to help improve emergency vehicles response times and increase safety.
About 50 major intersections around San Marcos have been equipped with technology to pinpoint emergency vehicle locations and clear the way so they can get to people faster in case of an emergency.
All San Marcos fire trucks and San Marcos Hays County EMS vehicles are equipped with a transmitter. The Opticom Global positioning based system transmits a signal from the fire truck or ambulances through Department of Defense satellites that send a signal to a receiver at an intersection to give them a green light as they race to a call.
The system costs $383,800 dollars, 90 percent percent of it was covered by a federal grant, the remaining cost covered with budgeted funds from the city.
Officials say it can reduce response time by between 12 and 25 percent -- precious seconds that can hopefully save lives.
By Angel Covarrubias