New 911 System Automates Texas EMS Dispatches - News - @ JEMS.com


New 911 System Automates Texas EMS Dispatches

Starting today, San Antonio 911 calls that result in an EMS response will be dispatched by a computer.


 
 

EVA RUTH MORAVEC, San Antonio Express-News | | Wednesday, May 12, 2010


Starting today, 911 calls that result in an emergency medical services response will be dispatched by a computer.

The new $1 million system, which will interact with a $16 million countywide Computer Automated Dispatch slated to roll out later this year, has been in the works for eight years, said Deputy Chief Rodney Hitzfelder with the San Antonio Fire Department.

Hitzfelder said 911 operators will enter a caller's information into the system, and then a computerized voice will alert the appropriate firefighters. Fire calls will be dispatched automatically starting in mid-June.

Although automated systems are being used in cities like Las Vegas and Phoenix, San Antonio's is unique in that it will alert the radios of the firefighters who should respond, in addition to notifying companies through an LED message board in each of the city's 50 fire stations.

"The more accurate the information our firefighters and paramedics receive, the better they're able to respond and take appropriate action when they get there," Hitzfelder said.

No jobs will be lost as a result of the new system, he said, and dispatchers will be monitoring specific channels and communicating with officials during incidents.

The automated system, created by U.S. Digital Design, essentially will be free for taxpayers, thanks to a $1.8 million out-of-court settlement paid by Interspiro Inc. and Harsco Corp., whom the city sued after a number of the companies' breathing devices failed.

Firefighters have been testing the system for a couple of weeks, Hitzfelder said, and detected some bugs that needed to be worked out, including the pace that calls are dispatched and the pronunciation of certain street names.

"We wouldn't want to get 'Alamo' wrong here in the Alamo City," he said, adding that the computer's pronunciation of "Alamo Plaza" was initially incorrect. "It can make a difference when we're trying to get there as quickly as possible."



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, Communications and Dispatch, Technology, cad, communications, dispatch, San Antonio, computer 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

Three Injured in Philadelphia Collapse

Parapet wall falls through roof of store.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

California Firefighters save Man on Flight

Patient was conscious and talking when United flight landed.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Over Half of Seattle Fire Stations Test Positive for MRSA

Surprisingly high results come from test kits based on earlier study.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Hands On February 2015

Here’s a look at this month’s product hands on.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

Nightwatch Series Premiere Party

JEMS Editor-in-Chief A.J. Heightman attends the series premiere of A&E's new reality show, "Nightwatch."
More >


Multimedia Thumb

Ottawa Chemical Investigation

Chemicals and suspicious package are probed at two locations
More >


Multimedia Thumb

LMA MAD Nasal™

Needle-free intranasal drug delivery.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

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

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


Multimedia Thumb

Field Bridge Xpress ePCR on iPad, Android, Kindle Fire

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


Multimedia Thumb

Braun Ambulances' EZ Door Forward

Helps to create a safer ambulance module.
Watch It >


More Product Videos >