Firefighters, police officers and 9-1-1 dispatchers in Virginia have over twice the rate of suicidal thoughts as the general population, and almost 1 in 4 have depression related to their job, according to a statewide survey. Many respondees said they didn't want to get help because they feared their supervisor would become aware or they thought they could handle it themselves.
The Spokane County Sheriff's Department and the Spokane Police Department in Washington state will use a $700,000 grant to add four "co-deploy" teams that each have a mental health clinician and an officer to respond to people having mental health episodes. The agencies currently have five teams between them, which work to prevent such people from being taken to an emergency room or jail.
Ride-hailing company Lyft has added an emergency service button to its app that allows passengers and drivers to contact 9-1-1 and provides dispatchers with a vehicle's location information. The company also added a "Smart Trip Check-In" feature to monitor passenger safety and will require its drivers to take a community safety education class offered by an anti-sexual violence organization.
Many state laws limiting how long freight trains can be stopped at railroad crossings have been rejected by judges, leaving law enforcement and firefighters at a loss when the trains impede emergency response. Federal Rail Administrator Ron Batory says the agency is prohibited by federal law from issuing regulations related to railroad crossings.
CTIA filed an ex parte letter in late August documenting a Federal Communications Commission meeting in which they expressed their support for 3-meter Z-axis location accuracy as well as ongoing testing for Z-Axis location technologies. Vendors of Z-axis location technology say their testing supports readiness, but wireless carriers have asked for requirements to be phased in while continuing to express concerns about the National Emergency Address Database.
9-1-1 and computer-aided dispatch are among the public safety systems that need to be protected from cyberattacks, writes Plano, Texas, Fire Chief Sam Greif. Agencies should ask their IT departments about the existence and configuration of firewalls and limits on user permissions and administrator accounts, among other things, he writes.