chase on wednesday

A scene from the chase that happened on Wednesday.

KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -- Some police departments are starting to use software that lets drivers know when they are within range of a chase.

What would you do if you knew a chase like the one that happened on Wednesday was coming?

It happened last night as traffic was picking up for an evening commute. Even after KCPD officers backed off, the armed robbery suspect kept speeding through traffic and was even crashing into cars at one point.

Among the thousands watching KCTV5’s livestream was Tim Morgan.

“It would have been nice to give drivers notice that a fleeing vehicle was someplace in a two-mile radius,” Morgan said.

Morgan is a retired police officer in South Carolina. Earlier this year, he launched an app that gives drivers a heads-up that a driver fleeing the police might be headed their way.

“They're erratic, they're fast, they're dangerous,” Morgan said.

It's called Pursuit Alert. Morgan's company installs hardware in a patrol car that an officer can activate during a chase and it sends drivers a push alert when they're in the vicinity. So far, a handful of police departments in Georgia and South Carolina have signed on.

“It's a one-button activation,” Morgan said.

The type of technology is similar to something the Raytown Fire Department uses.

Chief Matt Mace said the software helps them shave valuable seconds off their response time. It provides firefighters real-time data about floor plans, fire hydrants, and where other crews are.

“When a call comes in, it takes our data and publishes it to our trucks,” Mace said.

Raytown’s program is rolling out a new feature that lets drivers know via their phone’s GPS that a firetruck is coming, giving them extra time to pull over.

“It gives people that additional few seconds to make a calm rational decision,” Mace said.

Morgan said his app is a little different; during a pursuit, an entire area might be at risk.

“The chase you all had last night was a prime example of that,” he said. “The law enforcement pulled off the chase, but the car kept going.”

He hopes more departments embrace it or other technology that reaches drivers before a chase does.

“It's information you won't use very often but when you do it will save your life,” he said.

Kansas City police did not respond when KCTV5 News asked them if they've looked into software that notifies drivers of a chase.

They have not announced any arrests after yesterday's search.

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