I started the #IAM911 movement as something small, one voice, and I asked that everyone share their stories. Once you did, one voice became a worldwide shout from the Thin Gold Line. Because of your support and passion to show everyone what you do everyday, that you do more than answer the phone, the movement exploded.
Since the beginning I have been working on pushing your stories to a bigger audience and I’m about ready to reveal the next step. It’s an obvious one and people have asked since the beginning but…well…stay tuned. The movement continues…
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By Ricardo — 5 years ago
For years now I have heard this after saying what I do for a living, “Wow, that sounds interesting. So what’s your best or worst call?” Now, I’ve heard this many times and at first I was annoyed with it. I never wanted to say what I did for a living but then I thought about it. Why exactly do people want to know about what I do? The general public’s curiosity made me even more curious. After talking to several people I found out that they want to know because it’s not something you hear about that often. What we do for a living is very interesting and people really want to hear our stories.
All this curiosity has made me more than happy to talk about what I do. I’ve been in this line of work for a long time and I have heard just about everything you can think of. I’ve taken suicidal calls, medical calls, shootings, funny calls, car chases, and many more. I could blow your mind with the calls I’ve taken and you would be left with the question, “How do you do this for a living?” My answer would be, “It’s what I do and I’m damn good at it.” I have also shared moments with my work family that will never be forgotten and to explain it to someone would only scratch the surface of those specific moments. It’s these stories that I want to share with people; the calls you don’t hear and are curious about.
One time I was working the night shift with two of my co-workers. The night was rather calm and I was on radios. We talked throughout the night, which seemed to drag on, and a trooper keys up on the radio and says that he’s checking a residence for a girl that was possibly being held there by her boyfriend. I asked if he wanted any status checks and he said he was 10-5. This means that he doesn’t need any status checks. My co-workers and I went back to chatting and a couple minutes into the call an officer yelled something that no one ever wants to hear.
“SHOTS FIRED, SHOTS FIRED, OFFICER HIT.”
I can’t describe the feeling that went over me but my co-workers and I jumped into action to get an ambulance out to the scene to stage and direct other officers to assist those who were out at the house. It was unnerving to be in the dark of what was going on out there. We knew the gist but the specifics were unclear. We helped by looking up info on the house and it’s possible occupants. Anything the officers asked for we did it. After that we sat there as each officer called out his or her perimeter location. The standoff lasted past our shift and when I got home I couldn’t sleep. After a while I had to force myself to go to bed. When I woke up I looked online for the news story. It turned out that the suspect was arrested, one person died, and the officer who was shot was fine.
Moments like this happen at any time and I’ve seen my fair share. My experience in dispatch is not only interesting but it’s amazing. It’s something I want to share with everyone and I want you, the readers of this blog, to know more about what we as 9-1-1 dispatcher’s go through during these moments. It is also the basis of a Kickstarter project I started that will include a live podcast featuring the stories of 9-1-1 dispatchers. This podcast would give you a better idea of what we do and deal with. It will also start with dispatch but eventually I would like to add police, fire, and EMS. I will provide a link below to the Kickstarter page for pledges and rewards. Any help you can provide would be appreciated. My fellow dispatchers and I have many stories and this is just one way you can hear about them.
(Kickstarter – Within the Trenches Project Page)Post Views: 14
By Ricardo — 6 years ago
Last night I was cleaning up and shredding old papers when I found a “good job” letter from an old supervisor of mine. I read over it and laughed out loud as I thought about this call. I dig my job and I dig helping people but some people are just crazy and well…dumb. I know this sounds bad and don’t get my words twisted but some people just don’t think about anything or what they are doing. This is especially true when it comes to those who call when intoxicated. If you would like to know an easy way to get arrested, this is one of them.
It was December 2006 around 2am or so and I received a 911 call. It had actually been dead most of the night because of the weather and people were playing it safe by staying home. Some people were out and about either way and the fun apparently had been happening at an old country bar in the southeastern part of the county. I know this because of the 911 call.
“911 where’s your emergency?”
“Uh…well there’s no real emergency.”
“Hey! You listening to me boy?”
“Yes sir, what seems to be the problem?”
“Well DISPATCHER, I was kicked out of a bar and I want you to send an officer to my house so that he can give me a PBT and prove I was not as drunk as they said.”
So…you read that right? You understood what he was looking for? I could tell that this fool was obviously drunk and he wanted me to send an officer to his home and breath test him so that he could prove he was not as intoxicated as the people at the bar claimed. Ok, we’re on the same page.
“Sir, I’m not sure that the officer is going to go out there for that.”
“What!? Do your job DISPATCHER, do your job! Get his ass out here!”
I had to hold back from laughing because I couldn’t believe that this guy was calling for something this stupid.
“Sir, I can have an officer call you if you want to know what rights you might have but…”
“NO! I pay my taxes, and I pay your salary so you get him out here! You see my address on your screen?”
“Yes sir I do.”
“Send him here now!”
The guy who I will call Punchy hung up on me and I had one of the troopers call me in dispatch. When he called I told him the situation and he said he was not going to go out there but that if he called on 911 a few more times that he would go out there for a misuse of 911.
“911, where’s your emerg…”
“HEY! DISPATCHER! He coming yet?”
“Sir, the officer is not going to go out there.”
“I pay for everything you do and I order you to get him out here now! I bet if I was dying or fighting with someone you would get someone out here right?”
“Yes sir I would because that’s what I do and besides, that’s a whole different situation.”
“I know that you asshole! Look I know this is somewhat stupid but I have something to prove here! I paid a lot of money and then they thought I had too much so that stopped serving me and kicked me out because I got mad.”
“So…you spent a lot of money, you drank a lot, and you got kicked out. Are you by yourself sir?”
“Well yeah, what does that matter?”
“So…you drove yourself home after drinking?”
“LOOK DISPATCHER, THAT’S BESIDES THE POINT! None of that matters!” *click*
I hung up the phone and laughed at the entire situation. How could someone call for something so dumb? He even said that it was dumb yet he had something to prove. Punchy called two more times and the conversations were full of him yelling and swearing at me. After the fourth time I sent the trooper a message and he said that he was enroute to the guys house.
*holding chuckle back* “Yes, sir.”
“Is he on his way?”
“Yes sir he is.”
“Good! You make sure to tell him to watch out because I don’t mess around. I’m glad you are finally doing your job DISPATCHER.”
“Oh, I always do my job sir. That’s what we do here, we take the call and serve the public. I’m sure you will get exactly what you asked for when the trooper gets there.”
“Excellent! You’re not such an asshole after all.” *click*
I hung up and waited for the outcome. I advised the trooper of what Punchy had said and he pleasantly responded with,
“Oh I’ll make sure to keep that in the back of my mind.”
The trooper had only been out there for a little while when I heard,
“Central…one in custody.”
The guy had admitted to driving drunk and I don’t know if he got pinched for that since he wasn’t driving at the time the trooper was out there with him but he definitely got hit for misuse of 911. It amazes me how dumb some people are. Even you can admit that Punchy was stupid for making this call. I never heard from old Punchy again but if you want to know an easy way to get arrested, this is one of them.Post Views: 46
By Ricardo — 4 years ago
On June 14 -19 2014 the National Emergency Number Association (NENA) will be in Nashville Tennessee for the annual National NENA conference. This is a fun filled week for 9-1-1 professionals to learn and network through educational courses.
Our Industry Partners allow us to put on a great conference. They also provide the latest and greatest of their products to be displayed. I support how important it is for dispatchers to partake in this conference and the amount of knowledge one can take back is truly invaluable.
The Within the Trenches podcast is back along side Mark Fletcher of the Avaya Podcast Network (APN) in the podcast zone! There was an excellent turnout for the podcast zone last year and Within the Trenches helped tell dispatch stories from all over the United States. We also acquired sponsors for the week with advertising on the show, blog, social media outlets and more as a return to those sponsors.
There are three different sponsorship packages that include advertising for each Industry Partner sponsor during the week as well as the life of the show. What this means is once the episode is recorded and released to the public your ad is out there until it is taken down. And as of right now the show is not ending any time soon, and 9-1-1 professionals are joining “Within the Trenches” daily to listen in.
Sponsorships are set up in three tiers.
- Tier 1 for $100 – Your logo will be added to a sign and displayed on the broadcast table during the week at the conference.
- Tier 2 for $200 – Your logo will be added to a sign and on a special page of thejabberlog.com.
- Tier 3 for $300 – (Tier 1 & 2 included) PLUS your business will also be mentioned in an episode of the show
All sponsorship money goes directly to the show for t-shirt giveaways, mug giveaways and any equipment or web hosting needed for the show.
If you would like to be a sponsor please email me for further information at firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject of “WTT Sponsorship.” I will call you to finalize everything.
Thank you for the support!Post Views: 22