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This week, public safety dispatchers throughout the U.S. are being recognized for their service and dedication to the community during National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week, celebrated annually the second week of April. The Dutchess County Department of Emergency Response’s 37 public safety dispatchers ensure around the clock operations 24/7, answering thousands of emergency calls each year to assist residents in need. In 2017, the Dutchess County E-911 Communications Center answered 240,900 calls and dispatched 122,800 individual emergency calls.
Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro said, “We can all rest easier knowing there is someone available, no matter what time of day or night, to answer our call when seconds count. We are proud and grateful to have these dedicated individuals serving Dutchess County and its residents in this critical and lifesaving role. Their dedication should never be overlooked and we are honored to recognize their contributions this week and all year long.”
As part of their duties and responsibilities, public safety dispatchers are responsible for receiving emergency and non-emergency telephone calls from the public and transmitting emergency information in the dispatching of firefighters, medical personnel, law enforcement officers and equipment in the shortest possible time, while maintaining a calm atmosphere in high-stress situations. Dispatchers maintain radio communications with public safety personnel responding to the emergency situation. Dispatchers are required to monitor numerous telephone and alarm systems and radio frequencies simultaneously and must exercise sound independent judgment in prioritizing calls and dispatching appropriate emergency services as quickly as possible.