external image nfpa704.jpgWireless Information System for Emergency
Responders – WISER®


The Wireless Information System for Emergency Responders (or, WISER) is the name of a comprehensive utility designed for mobile use by First Responders in assessing and neutralizing hazardous materials emergencies. A service of the National Library of Medicine's (NLM) Specialized Information Services (SIS) division, the first version of WISER intended for use in an Operational setting by First Responders was released in 2004 [1]. This initial release cataloged a total of 390 unsafe substances and could only be used on mobile devices running the Palm OS [1]. The newest release (as of October 16, 2008) of WISER, version 4.1, boasts a much larger catalog of some 4,700 critical hazardous substances [2] . This latest version works with handheld devices running Palm 3.5+, Pocket PC 2003+, or Windows Mobile 5.0+; as well as desktop and notebook computers running Windows 2000/XP/Vista
(.NET 2.0 or above is required) [2]. In 2006, in an ongoing effort to expand the reach of the service to as many devices as possible, the NLM launched the WebWISER service [3]. Since it runs through an Internet browser and requires no software installation, any mobile or stationary device with a connection to the Internet can make use of the service [4]. Supported browsers currently include Internet Explorer 6+, Netscape 8+ (7.1+ for Mac), Firefox 1.0.4+,
Safari (with Mac OS 10.4+), and Blackberry; though users with up-to-date versions of Opera or Chrome shouldn't have much trouble [4].


To assist First Responders in dealing with incidents involving the presence of hazardous materials, WISER connects its users to a wealth of information, delivering guidance directly to those who need it, when they need it most. WISER provides a number of benefits in the successful handling of these often time-critical situations, including: help in identifying substances present, lengthy data on the physical characteristics of many substances, human health information, and recommended procedures for safe, efficient suppression and containment [5].

Web Resources

National Library of Medicine (NLM) Home Page
Browse NLM's Fact Sheets Index
WISER - Frequently Asked Questions
WISER - Download Page
Start Exploring WebWISER

Related Terminology

HSDB (Hazardous Substances Data Bank)
Open Handset Alliance


1. http://web.archive.org/web/20040805032540/http://wiser.nlm.nih.gov/about.html#operational
2. http://wiser.nlm.nih.gov/about.html
3. http://web.archive.org/web/20060929164135/webwiser.nlm.nih.gov/getHomeData.do
4. http://webwiser.nlm.nih.gov/help/WISER%20User%20Guide.html#_Toc196835876
5. http://www.nlm.nih.gov/pubs/factsheets/wiser.html


The WISER® Logo
The WISER® Logo


A slideshow displaying some features

WISER screenshot on Windows Mobile
WISER screenshot on Windows Mobile