By CARL SMITH
Starkville aldermen allocated $5,000 for the initial cost of establishing a local Yellow Dot program Tuesday during the board’s first monthly meeting.
The Yellow Dot program is an initiative which provides emergency responders immediate access to medical information during an accident. Participants of a localized version of the program will receive a highly visible sticker to be placed on the rear of their vehicle, have their picture taken for proper identification and receive medical information forms which they will fill out and place in the glove compartment of their automobile.
In August, the board voted to form a committee charged with exploring options to bring the program to Starkville. The current Yellow Dot committee includes representatives from city and county government, Starkville fire and police departments, and OSERVS.
Ward 2 Alderman and Yellow Dot committee member Sandra Sistrunk said the group is looking at ways to localize the program for the city. The committee, she said, has been in touch with program coordinators in Alabama.
“We are studying the materials they have made available to us,” she said. “We’re identifying places where people can sign up for the program and have their picture taken. We’re just polishing it up to make it Starkville-specific.”
The committee is developing a brochure to distribute in the city and county. Sistrunk said she hopes the program itself is implemented by or before the start of the new year.
As of mid-September, almost 30 counties in Alabama have implemented the Yellow Dot program.
“We’ve had success stories not only in vehicle situations, but also outside of those,” Lora Weaver, a spokesperson for the Northeast Alabama Traffic Safety Office, said in August. “A gentleman thought he was having a heart attack in church, so his friends there knew he had the folder in his car and rushed it to the hospital.”