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Smart Band® RFID Wristbands Track Runners' Medical Information at Alaska's Marathon Race

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Smart Band® RFID Wristbands Track Runners' Medical Information at Alaska's Marathon Race

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Precision Dynamics’ RFID Wristbands Help Streamline Race Operations

San Fernando, CA (July 12, 2004) – Precision Dynamics Corporation (PDC), a global leader in automatic wristband identification, successfully implemented its Smart Band® RFID Wristband System at the Mount Marathon Race in Seward, Alaska on July 4. The RFID wristbands were used for the first time at Mt. Marathon to ensure positive patron identification and access participants’ medical information.
Approximately 840 race participants were given RFID Smart Bands which contained their bib number, name, gender, age, and pertinent medical and emergency contact information. The system revolves around a tiny, flat RFID chip, sealed in a non-transferable vinyl wristband, that uses customized PDC software to store and transfer data which is read by RFID readers.
“Runners received their Smart Bands at registration where they presented a photo ID, and the bands were programmed using the event database information which was loaded on PDC’s Banding Stations,” said Victor LaRosa , PDC RFID & Age/ID Manager. Handheld RFID readers were used throughout the race course and finish line by medical personnel. Other possible applications include inventory control and access and security.
“RFID wristbands improved the ID process and overall event operations,” said Rich Houghton, race director. “The RFID wristbands gave us the capability to immediately correct and update information for each participant and have medical information on every racer. In the past, we had participants who were unconscious and we had no way of getting an accurate and fast ID on them.”
Lowered security due to inaccurate patron identification was a factor that led to the implementation of RFID at Mt. Marathon . In past races some runners gave their bib numbers to people not officially registered for the race, causing confusion. This year bib numbers were not solely relied on for ID and runners without a Smart Band were not allowed to participate in the race. “The RFID wristbands were non-obtrusive to the runners while at the same time the bands survived what is probably the most challenging race in the country,” adds Houghton.
To learn more about PDC’s Smart Band RFID Wristband System, please call 818-897-1111 ext. 1320 or visit

About Precision Dynamics

With nearly 50 years of experience, PDC is the global leader and pacesetter in the development of automatic identification wristband systems and quality healthcare products. The company introduced the first patient bar code ID wristband in 1984 and radio frequency identification (RFID) wristbands in 2000. PDC also provides premium healthcare products for labor & delivery, urology, and other applications. PDC is committed to 100% quality in service, design, and manufacturing. This is substantiated by their ISO-9001: 2000 and ISO-13485: 2003 certification at their main facility in San Fernando , CA .  Plans to establish certification at their new facility in Tijuana , Mexico are underway. For more information, visit

About Mount Marathon Race

The Mt. Marathon race is the third oldest running race in the country. It started as a bar bet that someone couldn’t run to the top of Mt. Marathon and back in less than one hour. Official records disclose that the Mt. Marathon Race actually began as an organized run in 1915 and has since become a regular part of the Independence Day celebration in Seward , Alaska . To learn more, visit
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