‘9-1-1 What is Your Emergency?’

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“9-1-1, What is your emergency?”

“Do you know how long the power will be out?”

“No.”

“9-1-1, What is your emergency?”

“Do you know the road conditions between Boise and Salt Lake City?”

“No.”

“9-1-1, What is your emergency?

“Do you know what time the parade starts tomorrow?”

“Yes. Noon.”

“9-1-1. What is your emergency?”

“I think my husband is having a heart attack.”

“Is he breathing?”

“No, I don’t think so.”

“Do you know CPR?”

“No.”

“9-1-1, What is your emergency?”

“There has just been an accident.”

“Are there any injuries, where is the accident?”

“Behind the Home Depot.”

“What Home Depot?”

“Well, how many Home Depots are there in Coeur d’Alene?”

“9-1-1, What is your emergency?”

“If you have Prince Albert in the can, you better let him out. HAHAHAHAHHAHA HA”

“Young man, the knock on the door will be the Police wanting to talk to you about ‘Abuse of 9-1-1.’”

(Click) (Dial tone)

“9-1-1, What is your emergency?”

“My GranMa has fallen down and I can’t get her up?”

“Do you know where you live?”

“Yes, but I am at GranMa’s.”

“Do you know where GranMa lives?”

“Yes, in a white house.”

“9-1-1, What is your emergency?”

“HELP!” and the sound of children screaming in the background.

“Take a deep breath, lower your voice, I can’t understand you if you are screaming.”

More SCREAMING, the sound of someone gasping for breath.

“Officers are in route to your address. Can you tell me what’s going on?”

The sound of three gunshots followed by the sound of the phone hitting the floor, more screaming, then a dial tone ...

A typical day for an emergency dispatcher means taking calls like these. Yet there is hardly a day that goes by that 9-1-1 somewhere is not credited with saving someone’s life. If someone were to look up the definition of “unsung heroes” in the dictionary you might find a picture of our local Sheriff dispatchers. They are some of the MOST important people in our lives.

PLEASE only use 9-1-1 when there is a true emergency. Teach your children how AND when to use 9-1-1.

Take first aid classes, learn CPR, build a first aid kit for your home and each car. Put blankets, water and other winter survival gear in your car. Practice mock emergencies at home. Have family members cross trained to use the phone, turn on the porch lights, administer CPR, apply tourniquets. Look it up, check it out! Get prepared! You might just save a life!

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