PITTSFIELD — When a fire tears through a home, officials say residents often flee with their phone in hand.
But few are able to grab their phone chargers when emergency strikes.
That's why, Police Chief Michael Wynn said in a news release, he and other first responders launched a program called Crisis Cables. He said he's working with the Pittsfield Fire Department and the City of Pittsfield's Emergency Management program to gather donated chargers to give to displaced victims of emergencies.
Wynn recalled one 2017 fire in which he'd provided assistance.
"Nearly all of the residents had evacuated with their cellphones. However, none had access to chargers," he wrote in the release. "As the night wore on, and our residents were relying on their phones to call friends and relatives and update their status on social media, many of them started to experience phone failures due to low batteries. While our shelter location had ample power, no one had power cords to charge with."
He said officers at the time worked to collect power cables from a box of donated phones, which he's now looking to replenish.
"Since then, I've assisted with numerous sheltering operations," he said. "Each time, residents manage to collect their phones, but few bring their charging cords."
Interested in supporting the initiative? Pittsfield's first responders invite residents with charger cables to spare to drop them off at Pittsfield Police Headquarters, 39 Allen St., or at Pittsfield Fire Headquarters, 74 Columbus Ave.
Amanda Drane can be contacted at email@example.com, @amandadrane on Twitter, and 413-496-6296.