On Thursday, August 27th, the Washington State Patrol and Washington State Department of Transportation (DOT) activated the Silver Alert message system.
Silver Alerts are for endangered missing people who are 60 years old or older. Often older people with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease can get lost. Time is an important factor in finding dementia or Alzheimer’s patients. According to the Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office an estimated 59% of Alzheimer’s patients will wander away and become lost. If an elderly Alzheimer’s patient is outside for more than 24 hours, their chance of survival drops down to 50% due to the risk of exposure.
Silver Alerts operate in a similar way as AMBER Alerts. DOT will display information on its electronic highway signs when there is vehicle information included from the State Patrol. DOT may also broadcast this information on its highway advisory radio messages and its 511 system. One difference between Silver Alerts and AMBER Alerts is that Silver Alerts will not send messages to cell phone alarms. If you see this message, please look out for the vehicle and if you see it call 911 when it is safe for you to make the call.
Washington also has an Endangered Missing Person alerts for people younger than 60 who could be in danger due to age, health, mental or physical disability.
The Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office sponsors Project Care Track which is a proactive program to find people with Down Syndrome, Autism, Prader-Willi, dementia, Alzheimers or traumatic brain injury.
Project Care Track clients are provided an electronic bracelet that emits a unique radio signal around the clock. If a client wanders away, the caregiver calls 911. This call triggers a rapid response from a trained team from the Snohomish County Volunteer Search and Rescue unit. The unit has a receiver that can detect the radio signal from the bracelet. Using Project Care Track bracelets has reduced the time to find lost patients dramatically.
If you have a loved one who you think would benefit from Project Care Track, Contact the Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office at (425) 388-3525.
Washington State Department of Transportation:
Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office: