The safety of the public, as well as law enforcement and first responders, frequently depends on a group of highly trained professionals who are heard far more often than they are seen. The California Highway Patrol (CHP) honors these skilled men and women during National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week, April 12 through 18, 2015.
“I am very proud of our dedicated professionals and the services they provide the public every single day,” said CHP Commissioner Joe Farrow. “Public Safety Telecommunicators, or dispatchers, are the first and most critical contact people have with emergency services. In addition to assisting the public, they help our officers in the field by providing valuable information, so that officers can get the job done on the front lines.”
CHP dispatchers handle the majority of California’s wireless 9-1-1 emergency and non-emergency calls. Dispatchers ensure the appropriate assistance is provided, whether it is sending an officer to respond to a call, or contacting fire, ambulance, or other emergency services. In addition, they are in constant radio communication with the patrol officers, often assisting them by looking up vehicle identification, license plate and driver license numbers, or by running checks for wanted subjects.
The CHP has 25 communications centers statewide that employ more than 900 public safety dispatchers. Last year these employees were responsible for handling approximately 9.3 million calls for service.