SCV Sheriff's Station Recognizes "National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week"
April 13th, through April 19th, 2008 is National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week. Public service and safety entities from all over the United States are participating in this recognition week in an effort to outwardly show appreciation for all the men and women who serve as public safety dispatchers.
This week serves as an opportune time to remind our residents in the Santa Clarita Valley of the hard working dispatchers that answer their calls for help and provide a direct link between the community and the responding deputies.
"It is the calm voices of reason and quick actions of these personnel that allow for immediate and coordinated responses to more than 57,000 calls for service in the Santa Clarita Valley every year," Said Captain Anthony La Berge. "We are fortunate to have such highly skilled and dedicated personnel working behind the scenes for us every day in the Santa Clarita Valley," he added.
As an expression of appreciation for the consistently high level of performance and professional devotion to duty that our Sheriff's Public Response Dispatchers demonstrate every day, Captain La Berge and the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station recognized the eight dispatchers assigned to the station with a gift and words of appreciation yesterday.
In addition to our local recognition, events are occurring all week long throughout Los Angeles County and the Nation. Yesterday, Assistant Sheriff Marvin O. Cavanaugh presented the Department's Public Response Dispatcher of the Year Award at the Sheriff's Communications Center in Los Angeles.
Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station officials also take the opportunity this week to remind all residents that the 9-1-1 emergency telephone number is to be used only for life threatening emergencies, crimes in progress, or incidents that are quickly escalating and may result in violence.
Residents are encouraged not to call 9-1-1 for such things as loud music or party complaints, traffic information, non-injury traffic collisions, general questions or report calls. Also, immediately following a natural disaster, such as an earthquake, residents should not call the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station just to ask "What happened". The phone lines are quickly inundated and should be reserved for those who have an immediate need for service. Residents should also program the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff Station's main dispatch phone number, (661) 255-1121, and the Los Angeles County Fire Department's main dispatch phone number for the Santa Clarita Valley, (661) 259-2111 into their cell phones.
When calling the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station with an emergency or other incident requiring the response of deputies, the caller should be prepared to provide the following information if at all possible:
* The nature of the problem
* The location of the problem
* The location and contact information of the caller reporting the problem
* Whether or not there are weapons involved, seen or accessible
* Business names, cross streets, and other area indicators or landmarks
* Descriptions of persons involved including: How many, sex, race, age, height, weight, hair/eye color, clothing, other
physical and clothing indicators such as – glasses, mustache, tattoos, hat, jacket, shirt, shoes, etc.
* Description of vehicles involved including: Make, model, year, color, license plate number, body type, direction of travel, etc.
Remember, the dispatcher may cut you off in the middle of the conversation or sentence. They may even be abrupt and concise with you initially. This is necessary at times in order to immediately obtain information that is critical to the initial timely response. As the dispatcher is talking to you, they are multi-tasking, communicating with other personnel, entering in the call, utilizing communications systems and immediately starting the response of personnel to your incident or emergency. Dispatchers are trained to control the call and gather pertinent information as quickly as possible, because mere seconds can make the difference in the final outcome of the call. It is crucial that they control the conversation and the caller. Try to remain calm and patient with the dispatcher and be prepared to quickly and accurately provide the information they are requiring.
Interviews, dispatch/desk ride-alongs, and photo opportunities will be coordinated for credentialled members of the press upon request. For additional information contact Sergeant Darren Harris at (661) 799-5814. For information regarding career opportunities with the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department or the position of a Public Response Dispatcher, call 1-800-233-7889, visit the following link: LASD Hiring or read this Law Enforcement Technician Job Bulletin.
If You See Something, Say Something! Report non-emergency crime anonymously by visiting the following link: Crime Tips or calling (661) 284-2-TIP / (661) 284-2847.
Always verify the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff Station's information and news releases by visiting our website at SCVSheriff, the City of Santa Clarita's website at Santa-Clarita, the Los Angeles County Sheriff Department's website at LASD or a trusted local news source. Three other local news outlets are KHTS AM-1220, The Signal and SCV TV. For media interviews or questions regarding this release, contact Sergeant Harris at (661) 799-5814.