China’s largest ride-hailing app Didi Chuxing on Wednesday announced that it has become one of the official channels to release information for China’s Amber Alert for missing children.
Nearly 400 million Didi riders, according to the company, across more than 400 Chinese cities, can form a virtual volunteer network to help missing children reunite with their families.
It is estimated that there are as many as 200,000 children who go missing in China annually, according to Chinese portal NetEase.
The state platform Tuanyuan, translated as “Reunion”, is administrated by the Ministry of Public Security. The platform updates information on missing children, while the Didi app automatically flashes an alert to riders close to the missing child’s last known location, basing on the rider’s GPS location.
Within one hour of the disappearance reported, the amber alert alert reaches users in a 100-kilometer radius of the missing location. They then expand the radius to 200 kilometers and 300 after two and three hours respectively, after which the broadcast radius widens to 500 kilometers.
When a missing child is confirmed to have been found, a “case closed” message will be sent to all riders within the broadcast range.
As of September 16, the state platform has issued 286 alerts for children missing since it was launched in May. Among these reported missing children, 260 of them were able to be located.
Aside from Didi, other leading Chinese apps also participate in the alert program, including Alibaba’s online payment tool, Alipay, and China’s largest social network, WeChat.
(Top photo from Baidu Images)