Boston Marathon Explosion: Google Sets Up Person Finder

Google has set up a “person finder” for the families of runners and spectators who were at the Boston Marathon Monday when two bombs were detonated close to the finish line around 2:50 pm, killing two people and wounding dozens more.

The person finder is currently tracking about 100 records for missing persons. If the user doesn’t find the person they are looking for, he or she can create a new record. While only the person’s first and last name are required, there are multiple fields including sex, age, and a description area that can also be filled out to help more accurately identify the missing person.

Users can also add information about a person so that their record is updated.

Family and friends searching for loved ones can also use the Boston Athletic Association’s athlete tracking website. Marathon participants can be searched by name, bib number, origin, and much more.

Another way people can find their loved ones is by calling the mayor’s hotline at 617-635-4500. For those who have any information about the incident, they are urged to call 1-800-494-TIPS.

Cell phone service was reportedly suspended in the area to prevent remote detonation of any possible remaining explosives, but it is recommended that those trying to reach loved ones text instead of call in order to leave the lines open for first responders.

The Boston Police Department has also set up a Google document for those who may have a place to offer those affected by the explosions. Anyone offering up their home just needs to enter their name, email address, phone number, and neighborhood as well as any additional information that may help connect victims to good Samaritans.

Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis has said there is no suspect in custody, and that there was no prior intelligence that there would be an attack on the marathon.

[Photo credit: Manuel Roman]