By: Beth Kneisler, Account Executive, Leonard & Finco Public Relations, Inc.

A couple of days ago while working away here at Leonard & Finco Public Relations, our Internet went down. While we managed to keep busy, we still all felt as if we were lost without the Internet. While we joke that we can’t live without today’s technologies, the fact of the matter is, some people literally can’t live without it. Case in point: Technology is helping keep the 33 miners alive that are still trapped more than 2,000 feet below ground in Chile.

The men, who have been trapped since August, weren’t initially told how long they could be in the mine. Many felt that if they knew it could be three months until they were freed, they would lose hope and give up. This theory was proven true when health officials had their first contact with the trapped men. Understandably, many were already suffering from depression.

Knowing the men could be in the mine for several months, in addition to figuring how to lower medical supplies and food, officials figured out how to lower letters from family and friends. They were sent MP3 players and now the trapped men and their loved ones are sending videos back and forth. Now that the men have had personal interaction with their loved ones, the men are doing much better. They’re healthier and happier.

In the meantime, officials are working on constructing the men’s rescue capsule which will be equipped with a microphone to allow them to communicate with the miners while they’re being pulled out. It’s going to be amazing to hear the men’s stories when they are rescued. I expect that many will talk about how thankful they were for the phones and videos which gave them hope during their ordeal.

Those who develop the latest technologies really strive to “wow” and entertain consumers, but I bet they never thought that their inventions would actually help save lives.

Are you aware of other stories where cell phones, MP3 players, video cameras, etc. have helped save someone’s life or rescue them from depression or other situations? I’d love to hear about them!