Emergency officials in San Francisco today launched a free mobile app designed to teach emergency preparedness.

The SF Heroes mobile application, created with local app developer CosmiCube, Inc., is a game that connects with Facebook, Twitter and other social media and offers incentives for learning about city resources and preparing for disaster.

“SF Heroes represents a new and innovative approach to getting our residents more prepared for any type of emergency,” said Anne Kronenberg, executive director of the Department of Emergency Management.

The app includes an emergency services map, location and event check-ins, social connections, educational quizzes, personal contacts, motivational check lists and a leaderboard to compare achievements with friends. Participants can compete through social networking channels and earn badges for their accomplishments.

“In the rising tide of social media, the SF Heroes mobile application uses technology to enhance the level of preparedness of all San Franciscans,” said Mayor Ed Lee. “SF Heroes is a creative emergency preparedness and planning tool that provides direct access to city resources and vital information.”

SF Heroes is available through the iTunes store and will be available for Android devices in April 2012.

Sara Gaiser, Bay City News

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