The Most Useful Free Apps in a Crisis

Here’s our current list of top FREE apps for business continuity and crisis managers.

There’s a saying that the best engagement is always achieved if you can “meet people where they are at”.   For many of us or our staff, smart phones are practically extensions of our hands.  So being able to talk about and recommend useful apps in your area of work can be a really useful way in – plus, the apps we’ve picked are really worth a look – and they’re all free!

EdgeRift’s Emergency Radio Free

Hear real-time emergency radio reports in your own area and around the world.  Locations from the US to New Zealand are covered by this surprisingly comprehensive service.

While available feeds to vary sometimes, those online show whether it’s a feed for weather, police, fire, and medical emergencies and the number of people listening to it.

Get it from the Apple App Store.

emergency radio free global local

 Myriad Devices’s Winter Survival Kit

This one is aimed at people in places that get severe winters, but it’s got lots of features that are useful in many circumstances.  For example, you can enter emergency contacts so you can contact them quickly in a crisis, and use the petrol/gas calculator to work out how far you can go before you run out!

 American Red Cross 

The American Red Cross launched its first app in June 2012.  It’s free and aims to put “free and simple lifesaving information right in the hands of smart phone users”.  It includes simple step-by-step instructions for everyday first aid scenarios; videos and animations to make learning first aid easy; safety and preparedness tips for a range of conditions including severe winter weather, hurricanes, earthquakes and tornadoes.  Usefully, and unlike many other apps, the content is preloaded so it can be accessed by users at any time, even if they’ve no access to the internet.

Get this app in Apple App Store and the Google Play Store for Android.

Binary Formation’s Inventory Photo Remote

Need a quick and easy way to catalogue kit in a recovery centre, or record what equipment and assets are in a given room or location?  This app, intended primarily for home use, can help you with that.

Take photos of the kit or contents of an area.  You can categorise items by category, location or collection.  It even has a barcode facility if you want to get ultra specific.

This app is for iphones and available in the itunes store but MyHome is an app with very similar functionality for Android.

American Shelter Locations

When a crisis hits in the US the American Red Cross invariably opens a shelter.  This app shows you where they are.

Each entry shows the nature of the problem (e.g. blizzard), the agency running the shelter, the full address of the shelter and – importantly – a timecode showing the last time the information was edited or validated.  There are also links to the news.

It’s free from Itunes.

[We wish there were apps like this for other parts of the world.  In most Western countries, the first port of call for this type of information is usually your local council or authority.]

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