9-1-1 callers in eight counties in Minnesota on Monday were able to talk to dispatchers and hear them, but dispatchers were unable to hear callers. The outage, which lasted roughly seven hours, was caused by faulty equipment at a fiber link in Wisconsin that has since been fixed, according to 9-1-1 provider CenturyLink.
Police in Dallas will continue to be dispatched for 9-1-1 calls where a person may be in danger, officials said Monday. Low-priority calls without the threat of violence will be diverted to an online reporting system.
9-1-1 dispatchers in Minot and Ward County, N.D., rely on maps and technology to send first responders to the right addresses when people call for help. "We get everything from a cat caught in a tree, to Grandma's having a heart attack, to my brother overdosed, to somebody's been stabbed, to Johnny won't go to school," said Margaret Haugan, PSAP manager for Minot Central Dispatch.
Howard County, Md., police dispatcher Joanna Blankenship last month gave CPR instructions over the phone to a caller who had witnessed a man collapse while playing pickleball. Police Cpl. Kyu Lee and Officer Stephen Schillinberg arrived soon after and performed CPR until paramedics arrived, and the player recovered.
The Pueblo, Colo., City Council has approved raising the city's 9-1-1 fee from 70 cents to $1.72 per month, the maximum allowed by the Colorado Public Utilities Commission. The change applies to cellphone lines and landlines, and city police officials say it was necessary to help cover the cost of joining the new Emergency Services IP Network.
Dispatchers say having automatic 9-1-1 caller location data and automatic emergency vehicle location would help them do their jobs better, according to research by a National Institute of Standards and Technology team, which interviewed 200 first responders and surveyed 7,000 more. Dispatchers and law enforcement personnel both want live video and images to improve incident response.