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A look into emergency service call center operations in Edinburg

A look into emergency service call center operations in Edinburg
1 month 1 week 1 day ago Monday, April 15 2024 Apr 15, 2024 April 15, 2024 2:01 PM April 15, 2024 in News - Local

Dispatchers answer nearly 5,000 calls a month and the Edinburg Police Department 911 call center serves more than a 100,000 people in the area.

Edinburg Public Safety Communications Department Manager Elias Martinez is the first line of contact for field crews during an emergency.

"No one calls the police on a good day, right? There's an emergency, and however small or big to the caller, it's important. So, we're trained to calm them down, get the information and set it up to where our radio dispatcher can give it out and disseminate it to the officers," Martinez said.

Martinez is one of 27 dispatchers who help respond to police, fire or medical emergencies in the city. They also answer non-emergency calls.

"We handle all city services. We contact everybody if an officer needs city crew, TXDOT, fire department, and we're the ones that are calling in," Martinez said.

The dispatch center gets 69,000 calls a year, that's nearly 500 calls a day. The most common call they get are for car accidents.

Martinez says it can be challenging to stay grounded during any emergency call. People tend to forget a simple detail when they try calling for help.

"As long as we have an address. Let's get the address, focus on getting the address of what, why, when's, we can get that while we have an officer already responding, but without an address, we can't help you," Martinez said.

Dispatchers say you should always teach your kids and the elderly your home address.

If you dial 911, make sure you know your location. Knowing the cross streets or a major business or store is a good starting point for them to send help your way.

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