Dispatchers — our unsung heros | AspenTimes.com

Dispatchers — our unsung heros

This week there is a banner hanging over Aspen’s Main Street to recognize National Public Safety Telecommunications Week. Please help us celebrate by thanking a 9-1-1 dispatcher.

Every day the safety and lives of our community members are guarded by dedicated and caring emergency dispatchers.

Your emergency dispatchers at the Pitkin County Regional Emergency Dispatch Center (PCREDC) are on-duty 24 hours a day, always alert and ready to answer all calls. Each dispatcher is CPR-certified, trained in Emergency Medical Dispatch and skilled in dealing calmly and efficiently with emergency situations. They are your first first responders.

In 2018, PCREDC dispatched 64,875 incidents to law enforcement, 6,421 incidents to fire and medical, and handled over 36,936 calls to 911 (up 3,000 from 2017) and over 100,000 total calls that came into our center. And these statistics fail to reflect the calls

dispatchers handled themselves: giving out phone numbers, giving directions, providing referrals and general information (“Is the pass open?”), rerouting calls to other departments and other requests.

Please take a moment to look back over the last year when an occasion called for assistance from the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office, the Aspen Police Department, Aspen fire or ambulance districts, Snowmass Village Police, Basalt Police, Roaring Fork Fire Rescue or Carbondale Fire Ambulance District. One of your well-trained dispatchers determined what was needed, prioritized the (usually multiple) pending calls for service, and promptly sent the right resources.

There is no greater sign of appreciation than to be honored by those you serve. During National Telecommunications Week (April 14-20), help show our dispatchers you realize how essential they are in public safety response. If you know any of Pitkin County’s wonderful dispatchers, let them know you appreciate all they do. If you don’t know one, rest assured that if you ever need assistance, in an emergency or on a routine matter, they will be there for you.

Brett Loeb

Director, Pitkin County 911 emergency dispatch