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Kaufman County Judge Bruce Wood Receives NG9-1-1 Institute Award

Kaufman County Judge Bruce Wood Receives NG9-1-1 Institute Award

Kaufman County Judge Bruce Wood received the NG9-1-1 Institute’s Government Leader Award this week for his part in revolutionizing Kaufman County’s 9-1-1 system. He was presented with the award by Congressman Lance Gooden in Washington DC on Wednesday, February 13 during the 9-1-1 Goes to Washington event.

The Government Leader Award recognizes an elected or appointed Federal, State, or Local Government leader who shows dedicated leadership in advancing the 9-1-1 system. Judge Wood was a significant voice in developing the emergency communications system for his county and played an active role in its implementation.

“Millions of people dial 9-1-1 every year seeking assistance during emergencies, and the public safety community is there to take their call,” said Joe Marx, NG9-1-1 Institute Chair. “Through our 9-1-1 Honors Awards, the Institute acknowledges the exception contributions by public safety professionals, elected officials and industry partners to the field of public safety. These award winners exemplify the highest levels of dedication and professionalism, and their contributions to public safety and emergency response are among the reasons why our Nations’ 9-1-1 system is the finest in the world.”

The NCT9-1-1 Regional Telecomunicator Academy Graduates 18 New Recruits

The NCT9-1-1 Regional Telecomunicator Academy Graduates 18 New Recruits

There is a shortage of 9-1-1 telecommunicators across the country. TCs come to work on their days off, when they are sick, and on holidays because if they don’t, someone might not be able to get the help they need in the worst moment of their life. The North Central Texas Emergency Communications District (NCT9-1-1) just graduated 18 new recruits from its Regional Training Academy, which aims to teach necessary skills and give them the resiliency to succeed.

Call takers help people through horrifying realities, and rarely receive closure. This can lead to fatigue and burn out, and on many occasions to PTSD. Agencies teach their new recruits how to use equipment, state mandates and regulations, and how to handle different emergency situations. The NCT9-1-1  graduates represent the future of the industry, and completed a rigorous 4-week Regional Telecommunicator Academy that taught them the specific set of skills they’ll need to succeed.

“I’ve been in this industry for 21 years,” said Lysa Baker, the NCT9-1-1 Training Coordinator. “And these recruits have blown me away. It’s my job to not only teach them legal standards and best practices, but to give them the resilience they’ll need to thrive. This group makes me excited to think about the future of 9-1-1.”

The recruits of RTA Class #007 are starting a new challenge. They go in knowing their work will make a difference, and NCT9-1-1 is proud to have been a part of their journey. The citizens of North Texas are in good hands.

Regional Telecommunicator Academy Class #007

How to Tell If Your Child Knows What to Do in an Emergency

How to Tell If Your Child Knows What to Do in an Emergency

 

It’s something we hope will never happen, but it’s also a reality we can’t avoid. Every day we see news stories or social media posts about kids who found themselves in an emergency and knew exactly what to do. We at NCT9-1-1 call them Kid Heroes, and though they stepped up to the plate and showed incredible bravery, they were also well prepared by their parents to handle an emergency.

If seeing these news stories makes you wonder if your own child would be prepared to handle an emergency, we’re glad you’re reading this post. We’ve outlined some basic questions you can ask yourself to find out if your child would know what to do in an emergency.

Do they know how to call 9-1-1?

Some parents assume 9-1-1 is an easy, self-explanatory skill they can teach in five minutes, but the act of physically punching 9-1-1 into a phone is just the first step. Kids need to know the different ways they can call 9-1-1, how to rely their location if they’re in an unfamiliar place, and what to say to the call taker.

If you need help teaching your child how to call 9-1-1 in an emergency, you can download our digital guide “4 Steps to Teaching Your Kid 9-1-1” here. It covers everything you need to know to start this very important conversation.

Do they know what an emergency is?

It may sound like a pointless question, but does your child recognize an emergency? It’s important to go over what qualifies an emergency situation with your child so they know when to get help.

Teach them the signs of an emergency:

  • If they see fire or smoke
  • If someone is unconscious or not breathing
  • If someone is hurt or bleeding

If your child doesn’t know what an emergency is, they won’t know what to do if they find themselves in one.

Do you know what do?

Kids mimic their parents, and if you know how to handle and emergency, it will be easier for them to learn. Does your family have an emergency plan for a fire or natural disaster? Have you talked about what you child should do if they get lost? Or if something were to happen at their school?

The secret to dealing with a potential emergency is planning. Sit down and talk to your child about scary situations they might find themselves in and ways they can get themselves out. These scenarios can vary from a house fire to a car accident to a threat at their school. Cover all possibilities, but remind them that these situations are rare. You’re not trying to scare them, but to help them understand that the best way to stay safe is to be prepared.

How Drones Can Help 9-1-1 Find Your Location

How Drones Can Help 9-1-1 Find Your Location

 

 

 

In an effort to maintain accurate GIS data that supports Next Generation 9-1-1 best practices, new tools are always in development to make a 9-1-1 caller’s location information as accurate as possible. We in the 9-1-1 industry are starting to see new opportunities in wireless location accuracy with RapidSOS, and now new technology like the North Central Texas Emergency Communications District 9-1-1’s UAS Program is changing the way 9-1-1 collects and uploads location data.

The ALI information provided by the carriers gives the exact address of a landline to dispatchers, and this addressing information is collected early on in the addressing process when new neighborhoods and regions are in development. Unfortunately, the current process for collecting GIS information for new subdivision means it can take weeks before the data is available to PSAPs, especially in rural areas. The GIS team of the NCT9-1-1 Program is leading the way on utilizing drones to create a faster process for addressing streets within new neighborhoods, and their recent pilot flight demonstrated that this technology can cut down the addressing process dramatically.

The images below demonstrate how an aerial view provided by drones can aid in mapping new subdivisions so that the information can later be uploaded for 9-1-1 call takers.

 

The traditional addressing method involves either utilizing hand-drawn plats from the county appraisal office, or driving new roads with GPS devices and then digitizing the information to be uploaded for PSAP use. The entire process can take anywhere from two to four weeks, which means residents could already be living in subdivisions that have yet to be addressed. The use of drones to capture the data of new subdivisions cuts this time down to only a few hours, accelerating the planning process significantly and letting PSAPs get access to that data in a much shorter timeframe.

Georeferencing with drones is just the first step for this new technology in the public safety industry. The potential this technology has to improve location accuracy starts with collecting addressing information, but has the potential to assist with subaddressing multistory buildings, and can be used to predict flood forecasting and for search and rescue.

The NCT9-1-1 GIS Team on their pilot flight