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911 House Numbering Project 

In an emergency situation, can law enforcement and emergency medical services quickly find your house?As Meghan Hayward tells us, inmates at the Penobscot County Jail are involved in a project that will make it easier.A house or driveway with an easy to see house number helps those responding in an emergency situation.Inmates at the Penobscot County Jail are making those signs for the 911 house numbering project.”There’s nothing worse to a person in need of help to hear the sound of sirens coming and then drive by their home. So this is a way for people to know that public safety can find your house quickly.”Penobscot County Sheriff Glenn Ross says the project is a great opportunity for all those involved.”Well it’s one of those win-win projects. The community wins because they’ll be safer because their homes can be easily found in an emergency. Inmates all benefit because for every two days they work putting the signs together, they earn good time so they earn a day off their sentence.”Inmates are happy to be able to make the signs.”This job, it gives back to the community and it also gives the inmates something to do. Not only that, it’s a good way to learn a trade. Before I came here I didn’t know how to use Excel.”So, what goes into making the sign?”Inmates in a computer design the number and apply it to the metal background and then assemble the stake.”Brewer Fire Chief Rick Bronson says they’ve placed over 20 signs on houses in Brewer since last summer.”What the firefighters in Brewer have done is seen that there are applications on the city’s website. You can electronically get an appreciation for a number off the city’s website. There are also applications at the city tax counter at city hall. They’ve just tried to get the word out and tell people if you don’t have a number on your house you really should have one.”Bronson says the project helps make their job a little easier.”Pretty easy for us if a house is on fire to see that. Ninety percent of our calls are ambulance calls and that’s a lot harder. It’s not immediately identified. So if you really want us to come to your house it would be helpful if you’d put the number on the house.”