911 operators from Pickering to Clarington celebrated during Public Telecommunicators Week

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Published April 13, 2022 at 10:29 am

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Durham Regional Police believes it’s time to celebrate its emergency response team: the “calming voice” on the other end of the line for people during some of the worst moments of their lives.

National Public Telecommunicators Week kicked-off Monday, an initiative established in 1981 by Patricia Anderson of the Contra Costa County Sheriff’s Office in California to celebrate and thank those who dedicate their lives to serving the public.

In 2021, DRPS 911 communicators answered 243,710 emergency calls – nearly 20,000 more than the previous year and 30,000 more than the total in 2019. Despite this significant increase in call volume, 93 per cent of calls were answered within eight seconds – nearly twice as fast as the national standard of 15 seconds.

This accomplishment is made even more remarkable by the fact that communicators also answer administrative and non-emergency calls – 383,045 of them in 2021, in fact. In 2021, they handled 626,755 total calls and still far exceeded the national standard.

“We want to recognize and thank every 911 communicator on our team,” Durham Police said in a statement, calling the 911 team the “lifeline” for police officers and other emergency staff. “Their professionalism and dedication to community safety is extraordinary. They save lives every single day. No matter what, they show up and are ready for any challenge that is presented. Thank you for supporting every caller, every time.”

“Your efforts help keep our officers and communities safe.”

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