Project Lifesaver is an electronic tracking device that allows law enforcement to find someone who has wandered away from family and return them to the care of a loved one quickly and safely. The Papillion Police Department, in cooperation with all law enforcement agencies in Sarpy County, began registering citizens into the program who are at risk to wander from their families.
Clients with cognitive disorders, autism, Alzheimer's or other types of dementia will be fitted with a small transmitter that emits a unique radio signal every second. The signal can be tracked by handheld or vehicle mounted receivers. Nationwide there have been over 1700 Project Lifesaver call-outs since the concept was started in 1999. The device has a 100% success rate. The average time to find a missing person is 30 minutes. For a person with Alzheimer's or other dementia-related illness, there is only a 50% chance of finding someone alive if they are not found within the first 24 hours. In Nebraska, with the possibility of severe weather in the winter and dangerous temperatures in the summer, a 30-minute search saves manpower, saves money and most important of all, will save lives! When a client is missing, the caregiver will call 911 and specially trained officers will respond to locate the missing person.
The equipment and training for the Sarpy County Project Lifesaver Program was funded through a grant from the Midlands Community Foundation.
If families or care facilities would like more information regarding Project Lifesaver in Sarpy County, they can call any of the law enforcement agencies mentioned or email.