The child was looking around and turning in a circle crying. I said “Did you lose your mommy?” and he nodded yes.
It Happens In A Moment, Kids Can Get Lost
I have my story here when my son Tanner got lost which is why I created this page. And of course he’s not the first or the last child to be separated from his parents.
I once was in Universal Florida with my boys and 2 of their friends and it was right when the 2 parks closed so very crowded in the middle section of the park called City Walk.
The child was looking around and turning in a circle crying. I said “Did you lose your mommy?” and he nodded yes. So I said “Don’t worry we’ll find her” My boys and their friends were all comforting him and we walked him over to someone that worked for Universal and they got on their walkie talkies -so where ever the parents were in the park if they looked for their boy they’d be able to find him.
I felt terrible leaving him before his parents arrived. but the 4 boys I was with were all ready to go and I knew he was safe now. I just said “You are safe now -your mom will find you with these people who work for the park OK?” He never said a word to me or anyone else the entire time. I didn’t know if he couldn’t talk, was told not to talk to strangers, or didn’t speak English that well.
The little boy nodded OK but was still crying. So we walk over to this Margaritaville restaurant and there is a little boy standing in front of us on line wearing the same jacket as the little boy that we just left.
Jokingly I said “Hey you didn’t just happen to lose your brother did you?” And this little kid turns around and nods his head yes.
I’m really shocked, I mean the mom is standing there in line for the restaurant waiting to get in, how is that possible? I know when Tanner was lost it I was frantically searching for him and got groups of people to help.
So I said excuse me to the mother and asked her if she lost one of her boys and she says “Yes my husband went to look for him” And I explained how we just found him and where I had left him.
To this day when I share that story I can’t believe how calm this lady was. The family all looked like they had blond hair, but it’s possible they were from Japan?
Feds Clarify How To Apply For GPS Tracking Devices
Following the death of an autistic teenager who walked away from his New York City school last year, the U.S. Department of Justice said it will fund voluntary tracking devices for children with autism or other conditions that put them at risk for fleeing their caregivers. Police departments nationwide will be able to make the tracking devices available to children in their communities who are at risk of wandering using money available through the Justice Department’s Byrne grant program, officials at the federal agency said.
All applications must go through law enforcement agencies, so organizations and schools should work with local police to put programs in place, Dworin said. Police departments that receive money through the federal grant will be responsible for designing and administering their local program and determining how tracking devices are distributed.
Where will the funding come from?
The funding will be made available through the Justice Department’s Byrne grant program, an existing program that law enforcement agencies use to pay for various programs, equipment, trainings, etc. A similar system is currently in place for devices for individuals with Alzheimer’s. This new announcement does not mean any additional funding, it just means that the funds awarded through this grant program can now be used for tracking devices for those at risk of wandering.
How can I get one of these devices for my child?
It is important to note that the funding from the Byrne grant program will go directly to law enforcement agencies, not directly to families. Police departments and law enforcement agencies will need to apply for funding from the Byrne program to pay for these devices, as well as education and training related to wandering. The police departments will then administer their own program and determine who will receive the tracking devices, how many will be distributed, etc.
Families, organizations and schools should go directly to their local law enforcement agency to encourage them to apply for funding if they have not already. The devices and wandering education will come directly from that local agency.
Is the funding available in every state?
The grant funds designated for these devices are federal money so are available nationwide.
How much funding is available?
In 2013, the Justice Department’s Bureau of Justice Assistance approved nearly $280 million in fuding through the Byrne program. We aren’t sure how much of that money will go toward wandering-prevention education and devices. Read more
Write your contact information on your child’s wrist and cover it with liquid bandage.
If they are lost another person will have a way to contact you and the liquid bandage will prevent it from rubbing off.
Life Protekt/Adiant Mobile
Adiant Mobile is a twelve year old global leading manufacturer of GPS personal location safety devices which utilize the newest and most advanced cellular, Bluetooth, WiFi and GPS technology available today.
We offer a complete line of mobile personal emergency safety products and personal locators that include wearable, lockable, waterproof watches, universal personal locators, wandering prevention wearables and fall detection technology. All of the Adiant Mobile GPS safety products have so many uses and applications. We provide the best solutions to “prevent situations from being incidents”. The markets we serve are those at-risk individuals that live or work in accidental or unlawful situations as well as: •Special Needs Wandering •Elderly •Healthcare •Lone workers •Law enforcement •Teen drivers • Campus Security
New technology to help “Human LoJac”
LifePROTEKT is the #1 resource for Personal Location Safety Technology and integrated solutions. We provide caregivers, individuals, businesses and law enforcement with the latest GPS and other location technologies and services to enable others to enjoy safer boundaries and in the case of an emergency – react more quickly
Phone: 1-(800) 939 3952 Fax: 1-(800) 964 7023
While most parents want to be able to reach their children if necessary, we found that most don’t want their children to have a mobile phone until their teen years. After all, mobile phones come with certain dangers for little ones, and they can lose them. The solution was to create Filip, a simple mobile device that children aged between 5 and 11 could wear on their wrist. In fact, up to five trusted contacts can communicate with the child using FiLIP, so children can talk direct to their grandparents and siblings too!
- Feature: Up to 5 Pre-programmed Contacts
- Feature: Durable and Adjustable Design
- Feature: One-Way Text Messaging
- Compatibility: Android 4.3 or higher and iOS 6 or higher
- Price $149.99
Trax is a tiny GPS-tracker that can be located practically anywhere, at any time. Just launch the mobile app and you’ll see the tracker moving in real time on a map. Create safe zones, (GEO-fences) get notified about fast movements and keep track of distances. Trax is water proof, packed with the latest technology and comes with two years of free roaming. Trax is all about your loved ones being safe – and it could very well be the most important product you’re buying this year.
- 2 years free data roaming
- Coverage in over 30 countries
- 1 day from a single battery charge
- Small in size and weight
- Intuitive smartphone App
- Price $249
If I Need Help
- Become a free member
- Create a profile, This can be changed in real time when needed
- Have special person wear or carry the iD patch, pins, clips, iD cards, shoe tags, or other iD products
- When lost, the code can be scanned by a smartphone/tablet or the number associated with the code can be entered manually into the home page of If I Need Help to access the contact information
- In a situation the profile can emailed to you and forwarded to searchers
- Information can be changed in real time (for example where your child got lost)
- Password protected secure site can be used to keep important personal information
- Price $10 and up
Testimonial about If I Need Help written by Denise Carter and shared publicly on Facebook
Select the right product for your child, and there are many to choose from. Then register your child, listing everything that someone would need to know in case of an emergency. Every product has a QR code on it that can be scanned by any smartphone or pulled up on a computer. Some of the products they carry are; t-shirts, magnets, ID pins, bumper stickers, window clings, ID clips, patches, keychains, dog tags and cards.
“Our founders are Bruce & Erin Wilson the proud parents of a fun loving and overly energetic 13-year-old son Jay who has moderate to severe Autism. Jay has very limited language ability. He has been lost at school and camp in the past. We keep a watchful eye on him and stay close. Often we position ourselves between Jay and an exit because he can suddenly decide to bolt into danger and he is fast. If I Need Help was created out of our concern and love for our son. Once we had a system that provided a greatly increased measure of security for him and greater peace of mind for us we decided to share this with the millions of other people in the same situation as us.”
If you don’t want your child on a harness or a leash, try this new product called a MyBuddyTag. It works with your smartphone via an app. This brightly colored wristband can be used for any event with large crowds such as amusement parks, fairs, the mall, airports and more. MyBuddyTag allows kids the freedom they desire and parents a sense of security.
The wristband comes equipped with Bluetooth technology thats pairs to a downloadable app on iPhone and Android phones (including fourth generation iPAD, iPAD mini, 5th generation iPod Touch) to track your child.
MyBuddyTag’s most important safety features include:
Proximity Alert System- When kids are out of proximity (about 40 feet) an alarm will sound on your phone to alert you.
Panic Button- Located on the wristband, kids can press the button to alert their parents they are in danger.
Email with GPS Location- Allows parents who have kids on field trips or with a babysitter to view when and where they were last tracked by the app.
Kids can show off their new bling to their friends while trick-or-treating safely. MyBuddyTag is available in four different styles and a plethora of colors.These bands retail for just $35 in a variety of styles such as silicone, terry cloth, velcro.
In the archives (and in The Late Talker book) I cover the cheapest shoe ID ever! (below) But one of if not the coolest shoe ID (that you could probably even attach to sandals with a string) I believe is
Children with autism are significantly prone to wandering. Many of them often get into dangerous situations. LifeBOKS is a kit provided to autism families designed specifically to help prevent that. If you have a child with autism, please upload your wandering story and you will get a lifeboks mailed out to you. If you don’t have a child with autism, but feel compelled to make a difference and help save a life, $18 is all it takes to help save a life. #lifeboks #18forlife
Alert Me Bands
The only Emergency Contact wristband fully customizable to communicate medical, special needs and allergy alerts. The one necessary accessory never to leave home without. Alert Me Bands are the simple solution to communicate critical information when you can’t. Take responsibility for your safety and for the safety of your children
3060 Pharr Court N., Suite 33 Atlanta, GA 30305-2054 Phone: 404.500.9111 Email: orders@AlertMeBands.com
AwareAbouts® tags fit easily onto standard shoelaces and Velcro shoe straps (attachment included) and currently come in nine unique styles. Medical and personal safety information can be engraved on the backside of each tag. All tags are made of durable material and are 100% guaranteed against breakage, water and UV damage. We are happy to provide free shipping!
P.O. Box 220459 | St. Louis, MO 63122 | Ph: (314) 835-0025 | Email: email@example.com
Also a real popular one are the temporary personalized tattoos for kids like
“The idea for SafetyTat temporary child ID tattoos was born of necessity one weekend at an amusement park. On Labor Day Weekend, Baltimore Mom, Michele Welsh and her husband, there with their three small children, felt out-numbered. To stave her panic, she quickly wrote her mobile phone number on each of their arms with a ballpoint pen. As she did this, she thoughtfully explained to each of them the importance of staying close to Mommy and Daddy. She also told them that if they were separated that the number on their arm was a way to reconnect with them. Throughout the day of fun, Michele had to rewrite the number several times as it smeared or washed off. Several parents in the park stopped her to ask if that was her number on the kids’ arms. Each time, they loved the idea. The day was a success and the idea for SafetyTat temporary child id tattoos was born.”
In stores and online http://safetytat.com/_cms/
Here are a few more pulled from The Late Talker book
2323 Colorado Avenue
Turlock, CA 95382
Phone: 800-825-3785 or 209-668-3333
Medic Alert is a long-established company providing emergency medical identification. For children, they’ve developed a sports band emblem in stainless steel with a choice of fun designs. It contains the child’s personal ID number, medical condition and a 24- hour emergency response phone number. Membership: $35.00 first year; $20.00 per year afterwards. Sporty-looking version at: http://www.medicalert.org/emblemssports.asp
2 Page Road
Fort Mitchell, KY 41017
Phone: 800-345-6336 or 859-341-1102
Originally designed for athletes, these personal ID medals can be just as effective for kids with speech disorders. They are available in stainless steel wrist and ankle bands, and as a necklace. Perhaps best for kids is a version that attaches to their shoes (underneath the laces) with a small Velcro strap. There is space for five lines of text. From $19.95.
James Engraved Jewelry,
LLCPO Box 527
Camden NC 27921
Tel 252 336-2538
The fun place to shop for children’s Medical Id’s. Medical Alert Id Jewelry, Medical Alert Id Bracelets, Medical Id Sports Bands, Medical Alert Charms, Medical Id Plates.Medical Id’s For your Precious Child. Children, Infants, Toddlers, Kids of all ages!
7803 Deer Run
Parkville, MD 64152
Fashionable gold and silver bracelets combining multi-colored crystals and beads –and an unobtrusive emergency ID tag. Especially for teenagers who want to be stylish. Named after fourteen-year-old Lauren Phillips who has diabetes. A portion of the profit goes to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. From $49.95.
ID On Me
The ID On Me provides convenient insurance when the family is away from home, whether at the park or beach, amusement park or visiting friends or relatives. A comfortable, convenient, water resistent bracelet containing emergency identification, medical and family contact information
725 Designs LLC
5442 South 900 East, Suite 245
Murray, Utah 84117
PS One parent suggested keeping a swab of blood stuck in the ziplock bag in the freezer as a good idea “just in case”….but just gives me the creeps.
Sometimes the issue isn’t a child getting lost by mistake, but a child that wanders. Below is some information that may be helpful.
CHILD LOCATOR – Child Personal Safety Alarm
CHILD LOCATOR – technology to the rescue for parents! Keep your child within earshot at all times with this revolutionary child locator device that uses a small key chain transmitter and a teddy bear-shaped child locator receiver (which mounts easily to child’s shoe or belt). Our locator is the perfect solution if you are going to Disneyland or Disney World
Child Locator Teddy Bear in Brown or Pink
ICD-9-CM Code for Wandering
For more information:
- Wandering code proposal (p. 17)
- Wandering code final (p. 47)
- Autism Wandering Awareness Alerts Response Education (AWAARE)
Questions? Please contact the CDC at 1-800-CDC-INFO or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Guardian, the world’s first wearable device links to a worldwide safety network. Parents can now easily pinpoint the whereabouts of their children anytime, anywhere with their smartphones. Every person who installs the Guardian App will becomes a part of the network, effectively increasing the safety of children around the world. If there is children go missing, parents can launch an immediate search on Guardian App, with the aid of Guardian’s vast network, and effectively decrease the time it takes to find them. By combining the latest hardware and social networks, Guardian increases children’s safety wherever they are.
- Invisible Safety Strap – Signal coverage up to 45-meter radius, keep an eye on them from afar (obstruction in environment might affect signal)
- Water Resistant IPX 5 – Supports every occasion for your children’s favorite activities
- Long Lasting Battery Life – Up to 4 ~ 6 months battery life, more time for activity with less worries
- Family Guarding Circle – Invite close friends or families to help protect your child together
- Globalized Co-Guard Network – The whole world is here to protect your child from going missing
- Price $39.95
Secure GPS offers a number of products for Seniors, Teen Drivers, Fleet Tracking and more. The Secure eZoom GPS device, you can track your child and check their location anytime online, with your mobile device or by sending a text message. Features include:
- eZoom’s SOS button quickly connects a child in distress with their parent or guardian by sending the child’s current location
- Waterproof and durable unit
- Long-lasting rechargeable battery
- 1-year warranty
- Price $77.99
If you want an all-in-one that will make sure your child doesn’t wander too far, you dont lose your keys or purse the Bikn (pronounced Beacon) might be a great solution. Unlike GPS systems, BiKN works both inside and outside your home or office within about a 250,000 square foot range.
- Your iPhone finds your stuff
- Your stuff finds your iPhone
- Compatible with the iPhone 4 or 4s ONLY
- Price $59.95
Nu.m8 created by Lok8u Combines GPS Technology and Cell ID technology to locate a missing person to within 10 feet.
A child wears a device that doubles as a wrist watch that comes in an assortment of different colors.
- Parents can track their child online or by sending a text message.
- Parent receives an instant alert if device is removed
- The ‘Safe Zone’ feature allows you to easily set your own defined area by time and day. An immediate alert is sent via Text and email to inform you if your child strays outside this area.
- Price: $199.00 per unit. Service Plan: $10-$18 per month
Designed to work for all children Amber Alert GPS can be especially helpful for children with autism. Amber Alert GPS is about the size of an Oreo cookie. You can put it in your child’s bag or you can purchase an arm ankle band to attach to your child. The device uses a combination of GPS and GSM (cell phone technologies) so anywhere your cell phone or a GPS system works the device will work.
- If a child leaves a designated safe zone you will receive an alert.
- Unlike the EmFinder the Amber Alert GPS may not work in water.
- Track your child from anywhere with apps for iPhone, Blackberry and Droid.
- Additional bells and whistles include the ability to call the device and listen in on whats going on as well as a predator alert whenever your child gets within 500 feet of the residence of a known sex offender.
- Price: $179 per unit. Monthly service plans range from $10-$42 per month
PocketFinder People GPS trackers give you full control in today’s crazy world. These reliable devices could help you prevent a tragedy with the children, teens or senior parents in your life. Or, they simply give you more peace of mind knowing you are connected to those you love most. Be in the know all day and from anywhere with full time tracking and access this data from the website or with the free mobile apps.
- Track Anyone – Use as a personal GPS tracker for kids, teens, senior parents and special needs loved ones. Know where they are even when you can’t be with them.
- Best GPS App – Customer reviews confirm the PocketFinder app is the best and easiest to use GPS app.
- Accurate – Shows location within 10 feet of the person you are locating.
- Zones and Alerts – Create geo-fence zones and receive alerts via text message, email and push notifications.
- Price $99 to $129.95 plus $12.95 monthly monitoring fee
SafetyNet™ technology helps public safety agencies quickly find and bring your loved ones home, providing you with additional protection and peace of mind to keep your loved one safe. When a child goes missing Safety Net works with agencies (usually local fire and police departments) that are trained in using Safety Net to search and rescue a missing child.
- Secure bracelet for ankle or wrists (unlike some of the other devices there is no tamper alert if the bracelet has been tampered with)
- Accurate to within 1-5 feet
- 100% water proof
- Uses Radio Frequency signals instead of GPS or Cell phone technology and can detect people in buildings and tunnels.
- Saftey Net works covers 60% of U.S. as well as part of Canada ( See coverage map)
- Price: $99 enrollment fee $30 per month
Personal Child Tracker works based on existing GSM/GPRS network and GPS satellites.
This product can locate and monitor individuals and lets you check their position by Google Maps or the software they provide.
- Works wherever GPS Navigation systems work
- Secure Geo-fence that will send an alert to the authorized numbers when an individual goes beyond a permitted area.
- SOS button will send a help alert and exact location to the authorized numbers for immediate rescue.
- Price: $160 No Monthly Fee
AWAARE (Autism Wandering Awareness Alerts Education), was launched by a cooperation of six major autism advocacy groups to increase public understanding of autism-related wandering and reduce the number of fatalities associated with wandering. AWAARE provides saftey information, safety guides, and resources to ensure you keep your child safe.
Project Lifesaver provides technology and education dedicated to improving safe outcomes for wandering children and adults. From their mission statement: “Project Lifesaver develops public outreach programs to educate others about the issue of wandering, and they constantly work toward developing public policy and effective law enforcement response to help save lives and bring loved ones home.”
Safety Net Source is a site that pulls resources and media content about wandering from across the web. Created by Lo-Jack, the site aims to stay informed and connected with the caregivers of people who wander. There are over 400 articles about Autism and wandering. You can also find Safety Net Source on Twitter and Facebook.
Founded by Sheila and Kenneth Medlam’s who lost their 5-year-old autistic son, Mason, to wandering-related drowning. The Medlam Foundation lobbies the United States Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee and Congress to establish the Mason Alert, a national wandering child alert program run much like the Amber Alert program for suspected child abductions.
The Alzheimer’s Association recommends the following steps, some of which may be tweaked to work for a child that is communication impaired with autism or another impairment.
- Install slide bolts at the top or bottom of doors.
- Place warning bells on doors.
- Camouflage doorknobs by covering them with cloth of the same color as the doors. Consider childproof knobs, too.
- Camouflage doors by painting them the same shade as surrounding walls.
- Create a two-foot black threshold in front of doors with paint or tape. (A rug might do the job, too.) This creates the illusion of a gap or hole that a person with limited visual spatial abilities may be reluctant to cross.
In addition to these preventive measures, you’ll want to take some additional precautions so you’re prepared if wandering does occur.
- Keep a recent, close-up photograph available, both print and digital. This is very helpful should the worst occur and your loved one leave the house unexpectedly.
- Keep a written list of places that he or she might go, such as church or a favorite restaurant, job site, or previous home. The Alzheimer’s Association notes that wandering generally follows the direction of a person’s dominant hand – to the right if right handed, or the left if left handed.
- Post emergency numbers in a handy spot.
- Buy identification jewelry engraved with “memory impaired” and the person’s name, address, and phone number. You might also consider Safe Return programs that offer a bracelet or pendant with a toll-free emergency response number that you – or anyone who finds the wanderer – can call 24 hours a day. Response line personnel alert police and a personal contact list.
- A high-tech option uses GPS and cell towers to provide an approximate location for a person who might wander. Depending on the level of need, families might request an alert if the person wearing the locator device leaves a specified zone, or they might tap into the system only in case of emergency.