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New registry puts emergency contacts at law enforcement’s fingertips

Emergency officials now have a new tool they say every Delawarean should know about.

The Department of Motor Vehicles launched its new Next of Kin Registry this week, a program that, with the push of a button, provides emergency contact information to law enforcement officials needing to notify a victim’s loved ones in the event of an emergency.

“Delaware’s new next-of-kin registry ensures that the people you care about the most get the call when you most need their help,” said Gov. Jack Markell.

DelDOT says the user-friendly program allows police to pull up the information from on-board computers located in their patrol cars.

“By offering the Next of Kin Registry, DelDOT and DMV are forming an important and necessary partnership with members of law enforcement and emergency officials. Through this partnership, officials will be able to retrieve vital contact information in a fast and effective manner to safeguard our state and those who call it home,” said Transportation Secretary Carolann Wicks.

“It’s this kind of teamwork that will lead to more success in the future and the kind of focus on making a real difference in people’s lives – especially in life-or-death moments – that’s just so critical to keeping Delaware moving forward,” said the Governor.

Participation in the program is voluntary and free of charge to anyone with a state-issued ID or driver’s license.

The program allows those who sign up to provide two different emergency contacts’ names, addresses and up to three telephone numbers.

DelDOT says the information is attached to the customer driving record and vehicle record and is only available to law enforcement officials, unless it is deemed necessary to be shared with other emergency personnel.

Delaware’s Next of Kin Registry mirrors a similar program created by the state of Ohio, and now becomes only the second in the nation.

You can sign up online, in person at any of the state’s four DMV branch offices or by mail.

DelDOT says more than a thousand people have signed up so far, since the program was launched February 14th.

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