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Siri summons Coast Guard to save sick girl from Harvey flooding

September 4th, 2017 at 5:12 PM
siri saves life

Most of us will (hopefully) never be in a situation where we have to rely on virtual assistant to save the lives of our entire family, but if that unfortunate circumstance ever does arrive, it’s nice to know that Siri can step up to the plate. 14-year-old Tyler Frank found herself and her family stranded by flood water from Hurricane Harvey and, with nowhere else to turn, she summoned Apple’s cheery helper to get her family to safety. It worked.

Being trapped by the rising flood waters was bad enough, but Frank also suffers from sickle cell anemia. As the hurricane raged, Frank began to have an attack, and the sickle cell crisis — in which blood vessels become clogged with the malformed red blood cells, causing great pain — made matters even worse.

That’s when she turned to Siri for help. Her request, “Siri, call the Coast Guard,” connected her with rescuers. Unfortunately, the first visit by the Coast Guard helicopter didn’t go as expected, and the family was turned away because the crew was only taking the gravely ill or elderly.

In a statement to CNN, the Coast Guard defended the actions of its first responders, noting that the crews had to make tough decisions based on the overwhelming demand for support. Thankfully, when the 14-year-old Frank called the same number the following day, the family’s prayers were answered and they were lifted out to safety.

Frank eventually ended up at Texas Children’s Hospital where she was treated for her sickle cell crisis and is reunited with her family at a Houston area motel where they are determining how to move on now that their home and car were both destroyed by the hurricane.

Mike Wehner has reported on technology and video games for the past decade, covering breaking news and trends in VR, wearables, smartphones, and future tech.

Most recently, Mike served as Tech Editor at The Daily Dot, and has been featured in USA Today,, and countless other web and print outlets. His love of reporting is second only to his gaming addiction.

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