New 911 system evaluates each call

MMiz

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New 911 system evaluates each call

By GENEVIEVE REILLY

TRUMBULL — A relative falls and breaks an arm. You call 911.
An ambulance is dispatched, but don’t expect it will come at full speed, with lights and sirens flashing, as a result of a new emergency-reporting system that will be implemented June 24.

“You may get, instead of a five-minute response, a 10-minute response,” said Vi Watson, the Trumbull EMS director.

The new system, mandated by the state, requires 911 dispatchers to ask callers a series of questions designed to help determine the type of response.

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rescuecpt

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My FD is dispatched by the neighboring FD (who takes the call direct, or a relay from County) and we don't use the Alpha, Bravo, Charlie, Delta, Echo stuff. We usually just hear "2-9-0 Northport FD on the air for 2-12-0 Eaton's Neck FD with a signal 16, chest pains at 2 Main Street, repeating........."

My ambulance corps is dispatched by the County like that. It's only right 1/2 the time at the ambulance corps anyway. And then you have to figure out what "6 Charlie 11" means - we just hear Charlie and go running anyway. :D
 

ffemt8978

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I remember hearing a few years ago about certain cities testing a non-emergency number (311). This number was to be used when you needed police, fire, medical, etc... but it was not an emergency.

Has anyone heard anything more about this lately?
 

rescuecpt

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New York City has 311 currently as the non-emergency services number - for all things: housing, water, electicity, non-emergency PD and FD, etc - they will put you in touch with the person you need or get you a phone number. They have said that it works really well and has really helped alleviate stress on the 911 system.
 

Chimpie

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I've never heard of the Alpha, Bravo, etc. system until I joined here. Then again, most of my experience has been with the FD side of things, and they just run 'hot' to all the calls.

For the VFD that also has ambulances, you'll hear something like this on a medical call:

[tones drop] "Scott Township... Medic 1, Engine 2... Medical Run... 123 Main Street 123 Main Street... Pregnant female with stomach pains. Will be in the lobby area." Then it repeats.

My concern is, as I'm sure everyone's elses is too, the response time increasing from 5 to 10 minutes. I've been the one calling in medical runs in too via 911 and can't stand the amount of questions that they ask. Especially since I, working security/EMS, am already working on a patient. Here, you tell a 911 operator what you have and where, then you are transfered to a fire/medic dispatcher and tell them what you have and where. Then they start asking you 30 or so questions. Lately I call, tell the 911 op what I have and where, they transfer me, I repeat what I have and where, and when they start asking questions I just hang up. I will say, "Sorry, gotta go" but only if I'm having a good day.

In my private community I'm on scene (not just outside the building/house) in less than 5 minutes, and it only takes me that long if I have to climb five flights of stairs. We work off of minimal information, i.e. person fell, chest pains, I'm sick, etc. I'll find out the patient history and further details when I get there. Unless the 911 dispatchers are giving first aid or CPR instructions, I say get the address, get the general problem and dispatch someone.

Chimp
 

ffemt8978

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Originally posted by Chimpie@Jun 28 2004, 09:59 PM
My concern is, as I'm sure everyone's elses is too, the response time increasing from 5 to 10 minutes. I've been the one calling in medical runs in too via 911 and can't stand the amount of questions that they ask. Especially since I, working security/EMS, am already working on a patient. Here, you tell a 911 operator what you have and where, then you are transfered to a fire/medic dispatcher and tell them what you have and where. Then they start asking you 30 or so questions. Lately I call, tell the 911 op what I have and where, they transfer me, I repeat what I have and where, and when they start asking questions I just hang up. I will say, "Sorry, gotta go" but only if I'm having a good day.

In my private community I'm on scene (not just outside the building/house) in less than 5 minutes, and it only takes me that long if I have to climb five flights of stairs. We work off of minimal information, i.e. person fell, chest pains, I'm sick, etc. I'll find out the patient history and further details when I get there. Unless the 911 dispatchers are giving first aid or CPR instructions, I say get the address, get the general problem and dispatch someone.

Chimp
I've been a 911 dispatcher, and can tell you this from experience. The reasons they ask that many questions are this: 1) They need to determine what resources to send (police, fire, EMS); 2) They need to determine how urgent the call is; 3) The responding units want/demand/need the information; 4) Most dispatchers are trained in EMD (Emergency Medical Dispatch), where they can give first aid instructions over the phone.

Have you tried to tell them that there is an EMT on scene, and briefly describe what's going on? I know that I was less likely to question police/fire/EMS on scene.
 

Chimpie

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I dispatched for about two years and we had a basic run card for medical calls that basically asked what the location of the incident was, floor level, breathing and conscious, cause of incident if known, any other hazard information if known and then the boys were toned out.

Chimp
 

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