Tuesday, March 24, 2009

What's been going on.

Oh my gosh...I have been such a slacker! I haven't posted for awhile, and last time it was a post I copied off my personal blog. I really try to be good. But of course I've been working, so of course stuff has happened. Here are some of the things going on lately.

I'm serious, this could not have smelled good! :P We got a report of a fire alarm. We were trying to call into the business (a normal routine on fire alarms) and I received a 911 call from a fisherman at Utah Lake (who would fish in there is for another time...) and he said he could see flames. I asked him where and he said at the dump. We got the fire department and police officers sent over and sure enough, the dump was on fire. Something funny happened when the officer arrived. We had already told him about the fisherman seeing flames, but the officer gets on scene and said there was no smoke or flames showing. We kind of sat there for a second not quite knowing what to say. Two different people had seen and reported two different things. And then we hear this "Uh, dispatch, I just went around to the other side of the building, and there are flames visible!!! They're coming from the building and they're 15 feet tall!!!" I just had a little laugh to myself. He felt a little foolish too. The lesson he learned was look all the way around the building before giving a scene size up. :D

I got to work the other day and sat down ready to face the day. I was on phones which I was happy about. I just wanted to take phone calls and do my job. I picked up the very first phone that rang after I sat down. It was a 911. There was a lady on the phone and we had the following conversation.
Me: 911, what city please?
Caller: Orem.
Me: This is Orem, how can I help you?
Caller: I have a problem. We were at the park and our kite got stuck in the tree. And it's not like a dollar store kite. It was like a nice, stitched kite. What can the police department do for me?
Me: Can you hold on one second please?
At this point I put the call on hold. I always expect calls like this at work, but for some reason I wasn't expecting in as the first call of the day or expecting it over 911. I had no words. I did eventually pick up the phone and tell them that there was nothing the police could do. They would need to find a different way to get the kite down. She seemed to not be able to believe that I wasn't going to send the fire engine to her lights and sirens to get the kite out of the tree. *Sigh* Some people.

Oh, what else has happened?

We had two kind of annoying 911 stories that happened on the same day and right around the same time. First of all we got a 911 call from a man at a pay phone. He wanted the address for an apartment complex in Provo. Now usually I am more than happy to give an address to someone but NOT over 911. I explained over and over that I couldn't do it and that we were holding up a 911 line. They told me they didn't have change to call a different number. I told them to find an open business in the area and ask to use the phone, and they finally agreed and hung up. Well, after TWO more calls from the same person asking the same thing on 911 lines, he finally called back on a non-emergency line. Non-emergency was call number four. So they were given the address and the Provo Police number (for the 4th time) in case the needed to call again. I thought for sure they were done calling, until 911 rang and it was them again. I didn't know what to think, but I was getting annoyed! We told the guy not to call 911 again unless it was an emergency. He finally listened! Now, now, it's not that exciting. He listened "technically" in that he didn't call, but he had the lady he was with call 911. They didn't have money and now wanted a ride to Provo. Finally we had enough and sent an officer down to the gas station they were at to talk to them. You can be arrested for abusing 911, and I didn't necessarily expect that to happen, but they needed to stop. So the officers made contact and made them stop. I honestly had my doubts even after the officers talked to them, but they finally did stop!

The other 911 call we had bugged me as well! I answered 911 (I answered alot of phones that night for not being on phones. The 911 phones person was busy with fire traffic so we took her phones.) I heard yelling immediately on the phone, and then we had the following conversation.
Me: 911 what's the address of your emergency?
Caller: address given
Me: Ok, what's the problem there?
Caller: There has been an altercation!
Me: Ok, what exactly is going on?
Caller: (amidst screaming) Oh, never mind, never mind. click.
The phone was disconnected. Let me tell you a little tidbit of information. If you want to make a dispatcher mad, call 911 and then hang up after you've said there was a problem and amidst yelling. It makes me so angry! I ended up calling back and had to explain the same thing over and over. The caller said everything was fine now. I told him that he had called 911 saying there was an altercation so whether he wanted or not, the police were coming so he may as well give me the information I was asking. He finally agreed and said he had been punched and was bleeding and his brother did it and may be drunk etc, etc, etc. While I'm talking to him I hear a girl in the background saying over and over "Just hang up! We don't want the police. Hang up!" The guy finally told me to talk to his mom and gave that lady the phone. I then started all over explaining to her that when someone calls the police and says that someone has been punched, the police are going to come. If everything is fine then the officers will clear right away, but they have to see it for themselves. They can't just take someones word for it. If they take someone word for it and there is a problem then that responsibility lies with us. The lady just would not give up trying to get me to cancel and I just kept telling her why we were coming. I figured that us talking about anything at least kept her on the phone. Finally the police showed up and I heard over the phone (imagine the most spiteful voice you can think of) "There are two police officers here. And just so you know, I DO RESENT YOU FOR THIS." Click. Let me tell you, I'm shaking in my boots! :P

Tonight we were searching for a suspect. We were helping the detective and we kept getting small parts of information. We got that the suspect vehicle was red. Then we heard it was a Mazda. Then they added that it might be a Mitsubishi. So there are four dispatchers and we're all searching the best way we can but still wanted more information if it were possible. Finally the detective told us that the year of the vehicle was a middle year. Oh, ok....wait, what is a middle year? I honestly had no idea. We were wondering if it was middle of the officers life or middle of the 2000's or middle of what? I finally had to ask him. I got on the radio and asked the officer "Can you advise what a middle year vehicle is?" There was kind of a silence for a second and then he replied "Not old, but not new." Um, hello, I think I liked the middle year answer better. It was so funny. He finally called in later and said he had asked a 17 year old how old the vehicle was. She said she didn't know and he asked her if it was old or new and she said it was a middle year. He didn't know what it meant either. But he probably could have come up with a better answer for the radio, don't you think? ;D

And that's just some of what has been happening lately. I'm sure there is more but it's late (well early) and I'm tired so I'm calling it a night. Hope you enjoyed!

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