Emergency Dispatch Changes Take Effect in Maine County - News - @ JEMS.com


Emergency Dispatch Changes Take Effect in Maine County

Androscoggin County begins charging fees to towns for dispatching fire, police and emergency calls.


 
 

DANIEL HARTILL, Sun Journal | | Wednesday, January 2, 2013


LEWISTON - Moments after the new year began Tuesday, emergency phone calls from Sabattus and Durham took a new route.

Calls for help to police officers, firefighters or paramedics will go first to Androscoggin County's dispatch center, as they have for more than a decade. Then, in most cases, they'll be transferred to a dispatch center in Lisbon.

The reason is the long-debated Androscoggin County dispatching plan, which takes effect with the new year.

On Jan. 1, the county will begin charging fees to towns to dispatch their police, fire and emergency calls. Three towns -- Sabattus, Durham and Greene -- made agreements with Lisbon.

The Sabattus and Durham dispatching will begin right away.

In Sabattus, the agreement includes full-time dispatching of fire and rescue services and dispatching police during off hours. The town has been doing its own police dispatching from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays and will continue that procedure in 2013.

In Durham, which has no police department, the deal calls for fire and rescue services only.

Greene also plans to transfer dispatching services to Lisbon, as soon as new radio equipment arrives from Fire Department personnel and first responders.

"At midnight, we'll be making the switch," Sabattus police Chief Anthony Ward said Monday. "From the residents' standpoint, they should see no real change."

People are still encouraged to dial 911 in case of an emergency. And the county will still serve as the initial recipient or public safety answering point for all county municipalities except Lewiston and Auburn. Call transfers should take only a few seconds.

And despite the changes, the county dispatch center is not expected to feel a sharp decline in its work, said Capt. Raymond Lafrance, who supervises dispatching and the patrol division at the Androscoggin County Sheriff's Office.

The call volume for all three towns is modest. More importantly, the state's call answering system is getting better at handling 911 calls that originate from cellphones. In most parts of the county outside of Lewiston-Auburn, those calls go directly to the Maine State Police, which directs them to the appropriate agency.

New technology is going to be introduced that will automatically send many of those calls to the county.

"The state predicted we'll answer another 1,900 calls a year," Lafrance said. "We feel (the workload) will be about the same when all is said and done."



Copyright © 2013 LexisNexis, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. Terms and Conditions | Privacy Policy


Connect: Have a thought or feedback about this? Add your comment now
Related Topics: News, emergency dispatch

What's Your Take? Comment Now ...

Buyer's Guide Featured Companies

Featured Careers & Jobs in EMS

Get JEMS in Your Inbox

 

Fire EMS Blogs


Blogger Browser

Today's Featured Posts

 

EMS Airway Clinic

Improving Survival from Cardiac Arrest Using ACD-CPR + ITD

Using active compression-decompression CPR with an ITD has been shown to improve 1-year survival from cardiac arrest by 33%.
More >

Multimedia Thumb

Philadelphia Fire Department Apologizes for Medic’s Jab at Police

Union head calls photos a slap in the face of officers.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

D.C. Fire and EMS Crews Blame New Technology for Patient’s Death

Delayed response blamed on recurring dispatch problems.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Suspect Steals, Crashes Maryland Ambulance

One killed, others injured in Prince George’s County crash.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Truck Strikes Pedestrians in Scotland

Six killed in downtown Glasgow.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

Tennessee Trench Rescue

Worker pulled from Roane County worksite.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

Time’s Ebola Firefighters

Doctors, nurses and others saluted for fighting virus.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

The AmbuBus®, Bus Stretcher Conversion Kit - EMS Today 2013

AmbuBus®, Bus Stretcher all-hazards preparedness & response tool
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Braun Ambulances' EZ Door Forward

Helps to create a safer ambulance module.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Field Bridge Xpress ePCR on iPad, Android, Kindle Fire

Sneak peek of customizable run forms & more.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

VividTrac offered by Vivid Medical - EMS Today 2013

VividTrac, affordable high performance video intubation device.
Watch It >


More Product Videos >