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911 Call Takers Honoured

“911, what is your emergency?”

Nova Scotians heard this comforting phrase more than 230,000 times last year. 911 call takers help people during police, fire or medical emergencies, when help is needed immediately.

The province is honouring them during National Public Safety Telecommunicators’ Week, which runs through Saturday, April 19.

“911 call takers play a critical role in protecting the health, safety and property of Nova Scotians,” said Mark Furey, Minister responsible for the Emergency Management Office. “They are dedicated people who provide a vital link to emergency services.”

Nova Scotia 911 call takers receive 650 calls per day.

“We are proud to recognize the 80 public safety telecommunicators employed in our Integrated Emergency Services dispatch centre,” said Halifax Regional Police Chief Jean-Michel Blais. “These dedicated men and women truly put the first in first responders. They are a voice of calm at the other end of the line for citizens in times of crisis, and offer critical support to emergency personnel.”

“In recognition of National Telecommunicators’ Week, I would like to acknowledge the enormous contributions of our dedicated emergency call takers and dispatchers who maintain an around-the-clock, life-saving link between the fire service and the community it protects,” said Fire Chief Doug Trussler, Halifax Regional Fire and Emergency.

More than 20 per cent of 911 calls are not an emergency or were dialed by mistake. To help prevent pocket dials, Nova Scotians are encouraged to lock their cellphones and store them in a protective case. People who dial 911 by mistake, should stay on the line and speak with the call taker.

When people hang up, 911 calls back to ensure the caller is safe. That ties up resources and, when the hangup is from a landline, means the police are contacted.

The Emergency Management Office administers the provincewide 911 emergency service and works closely with all emergency response agencies.

The four 911 public safety answering points in Nova Scotia are Dartmouth, Sydney, Truro and Kentville.

For more information on 911, visit http://novascotia.ca/just/EMO/911/when_to_call.asp .

FOR BROADCAST USE

     The province is honouring 911 call takers during National

Public Safety Telecommunicators’ Week, which runs through

Saturday (April 19th).

     Mark Furey, Minister responsible for the Emergency

Management Office says that 911 call takers play a critical role

in protecting the health, safety and property of Nova Scotians.

     Nova Scotia 911 call takers receive 650 calls per day. 911

is for police, fire, or medical emergencies, when help is needed

immediately.

Source: Release

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