Now automatic safety system can help people in Ford City, Taft Heights, South Taft too
The Taft Police Department's automated safety programs for shut-ins is expanding to encompass unincorporated areas around the city, too.
The RUOK (Are You OK?) operates with an automatic phone call at a prearranged time to the homes of seniors, shut-ins and the disabled to check to make sure they are all right.
If there is no answer, a police officer is dispatched to home to check on the person.
Taft Chief of Police Ken McMinn said he has been working for several years with the Kern County Sheriff's Office to bring unincorporated areas into the program, and all the red tape has finally been cut.
“This is a great program and it's been underutilized,” he said.
He said it's the city's way of reaching out to its neighbors.
“It's the City of Taft offering an olive branch to the residents of Ford City, South Taft and Taft Heights,” McMinn said.
Taft Police will hold duplicate keys to homes in the unincorporated areas in case deputies are out of the immediate area, and will Taft officers will respond on RUOK checks in the county if necessary, McMinn said.
He emphasized the Sheriff has worked with Taft PD on getting the program in all along – it was just “legislative hoops” that held up the program, he said.
“There's not a better working relationship in Kern County between a police department and the Sheriff than there is in Taft,” McMinn said.
Contact the Taft Police Department at 763-3101 for information about the RUOK program.