Law Enforcement Officers run towards danger while others run away. Prime examples are the Dallas Police Officers on July 7, 2016 during the active shooter ambush. Whether or not you respect Law Enforcement Officers, they are going to keep serving and protecting even if it costs them their lives. Law Enforcement deaths are not declining, but in fact growing at an alarming rate. Although Law Enforcement Officers are being targeted, majority of those deaths are contributed to poor training tactics. These are people that put their lives in harm’s way every day and deserve to receive top of the line training to reverse those numbers.
Firefighters run into burning buildings when everyone else is running out. In some areas, they are also trained in E.M.S. (Emergency Medical Services) and operate ambulances in addition to being a Firefighter. Firefighters work closely with other emergency response agencies, most particularly local and state Police and Fire departments. On several occasions, Firefighters and Emergency Medical Personnel have also been under attack with no way of defending themselves except to wait for Law Enforcement Officers. Just by simply responding to a medical emergency they could get ambushed, held hostage, and even lose their lives for attempting to save another.
Volunteer Reserve Law Enforcement Officers, Firefighters, and Emergency Medical Personnel (who receive NO compensation) illustrates that there are selfless professionals that donate their time to provide Police, Fire and Medical coverage because it is a necessity for the community. Volunteers are perfect examples on how important it is to have these First Responders readily available and properly trained.
Telecommunicators (i.e. both dispatchers and 911 call takers) serve as the true First Responder. The response begins when they receive the call. They are the most important people you will never see. They are the lifeline for all First Responders and the public they serve and protect. There is a high level of public expectation of what type of service they will receive when they call 911 such as, the 911 call taker knows exactly where they are regardless if they use a landline or cell phone. This is a completely false belief and unfortunately 911 PSAPs (Public Safety Answering Point i.e. 911 call centers) from across the country do not have the basic and critical up-to-date technology to effectively do their job and to receive continuing education training. It wasn’t until January 1, 2014 that Telecommunicators became licensed the same as Peace Officers and Jailers. Very rarely are Telecommunicators included in training with other First Responders, yet they are in the center of communications for all active incidents for each department.
Here is one of many scenarios to consider for how important training and certification is for Telecommunicators:
Your loved one goes into cardiac arrest and stops breathing. Ambulance response to your location takes approximately 8 minutes without any delays. Brain cells begin to die after approximately 4-6 minutes of no blood-flow. After around 10 minutes, those cells will cease to function, and will be effectively dead.
Without properly and specially trained Telecommunicators, you are not going to receive the LIFE SAVING pre-arrival instructions when you dial 911. These pre-arrival instructions will guide the caller with step by step instructions for medical emergencies such as when someone stops breathing and is in cardiac arrest. The Telecommunicator will have the ability to immediately begin CPR (CardioPulmonary Resuscitation) instructions because seconds count and waiting until Emergency Medical Personnel arrive can be too late.
When major incidents occur it is all hands on deck. We are doing a disservice to ourselves as well as the community if First Responders do not start training together.
At E.O.P.G. our commitment and strategy is to train ALL First Responders together!