Twitter For First Response

Twitter just gained a new importance to us in Calgary

. A flood of fast moving river water could not have been predicted only 5 years ago. Sure we had the news but we are busy people. Not everyone is seeing the news. What are we seeing?

We are all attached to our smart phones. We are all checking our updates. Twitter gives us some of the fastest news on the planet now. It is immediate response posted by friends, family, associates, and feeds that we enjoy from all over the world. When there is a bombing somewhere we now know about it hours before the news airs at 6:00. We hear about war, prices on products we love, criminals on the loose, and impending disaster before it shows up on the doorstep.

Wednesday June 19 I went to bed in Black Diamond thinking it was raining too hard and the Sheep River may flood. The town sirens went off at 2:45 AM. By 4:30 the Sheep River breached its banks. By 8:00 the downtown area was flooding. We were all down there taking pictures and posting them on Facebook, Twitter and even LinkedIn. There were others posting that day in Canmore as the Cougar River was destroying highways and homes. Do you think these graphic photos and videos had an impact on Calgary?

City workers, police and firefighters all had an urgency by the time the flooding reached Calgary on Friday. The people did not resist the evacuation order. Why is that?

It is hard to resist when you have seen the destruction coming your way. News stations all use Twitter now and they regularly monitor the tweets for people like me and you who may post something interesting. They retweet it. They send out their own camera crews to see for themselves and get more news feed. They tweet that long before the news comes on television for the scheduled broadcast. It is a different world today. Your post may matter and others take it and use it to prepare the people.

We need to promote the use of Twitter more. It may make a difference to someone and save a life. You need to be using Twitter. Your business needs to be on Twitter so it has a say in the world that we live in. Your staff member may be the one that sees a tweet that saves your life or even notices something important for your business. This is where the fastest source of news is. Twitter is going to become the first response in disasters.


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