How Prague’s Lampposts Help Save Lives

Every lamppost in Prague has a six-digit number posted at eye-level, and their purpose serves a greater importance than you might think

If you walk through the streets of Prague, you might notice a 6-digit number printed at eye level on each lamppost throughout the Czech capital.

That is, if they aren’t covered up by flyers promoting events or other services.

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But did you know the reason for these numbers?

They aren’t just ID codes – they’re used by emergency services to help pinpoint locations when a caller is unable to give an exact address.

“Last year, we identified 1,757 locations via the label on the lampposts,” Dominik Horn, a spokesperson for Prague Emergency Services, told Blesk

“If a caller does not know the exact address, the dispatcher will direct them to go to the nearest lamppost and read the number plate. It is then entered into a database and we are able to precisely locate the caller.”

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Those stickers, flyers, and other pieces of advertising that might be stuck to the posts and covering up the numbers, in that case, might be a potential hazard to people in need.

Also read:  The coronavirus epidemic is slowing down in the Czech Republic, with 3,869 confirmed cases

“Of the roughly 135,000 lampposts [in Prague], illegal flyer-posting regularly occurs in about one-tenth of them,” Pavel Donev, a representative from El Todo, told Blesk.

The company removes hundreds of illegal flyers from Prague lampposts every week, and coats the posts with a special paint that makes it more difficult for flyers to be stuck to them. 

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