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#171458 - 04/16/09 07:22 PM Re: Emergency operators were 'sarcastic' [Re: Tjin]
oldsoldier Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 11/25/06
Posts: 742
Loc: MA
And, the apparent lack of empathy. Although, without any of us hearing the call, this is conjecture. Still, if that is true, there should be repercussions. Ultimately, the operator failed at his/her job. Their job is to gather information & provide assistance-clearly, they did neither.
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#171460 - 04/16/09 07:49 PM Re: Emergency operators were 'sarcastic' [Re: oldsoldier]
scafool Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 12/18/08
Posts: 1534
Loc: Muskoka
I read the article and I see a problem with the article, the supervision and the system.
Everybody, even in the comments, are either blaming or defending the operators.

The thing is the Supt who is saying his operators were sarcastic is the one who is supposed to be responsible for their behavior.
This sounds like another case where somebody is enjoying the perks of their position of authority without facing the obligations of responsibility.
The supervisors in this case all need to be taken to the town square and publicly flogged, with the initial of their sin branded into their foreheads after their public flogging.
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#171466 - 04/16/09 10:27 PM Re: Emergency operators were 'sarcastic' [Re: scafool]
Chris Kavanaugh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/09/01
Posts: 3824
So, what do we as a community take from this?

It is always easy to 'monday morning quarterback'

and find fault.

A public figure dies from a gunshot wound and his family become

gun control advocates. A movie star's child contracts a

rare 'orphan disease' and they become spokespersons.

How many here are active in orienteering? Think maybe a 17 y/o

with even the rudiments of that activity would get lost?

We offer Driver's Ed in school, say no to drugs and countless

programmes to give the next generation a fighting chance on our

streets. But 'where the sidewalk ends' seems to be society's

boundary of responsibility too.


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#171479 - 04/17/09 12:56 AM Re: Emergency operators were 'sarcastic' [Re: Chris Kavanaugh]
KI6IW Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 12/23/05
Posts: 203
Loc: San Francisco Bay Area, USA
I spent the day teaching an update course for 911 dispatchers in California. Part of the course discusses PLB's, Tracme, and SPoT (and the advantages and disadvantages). And I recommend this site (among others) to them for further info.

For those who do not know, most 911 dispatchers in California are working 60-80 hour work weeks, because public safety agencies are not able to find or attract qualified employees for that job. If you would like to see the job up close, most agencies will let you "sit-in" the 911 center for a couple of hours to observe.
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#171483 - 04/17/09 01:53 AM Re: Emergency operators were 'sarcastic' [Re: MedB]
Roarmeister Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 09/12/01
Posts: 954
Loc: Saskatchewan, Canada
Originally Posted By: MedB
Normally I am pretty accepting of the human failings we all have, but in this case I have to agree with Andrew.
If you lack the skills and demeanour to be a good McDonald's cashier, someone gets the wrong hamburger.
If you lack the skills and demeanour to be a good 911 operator, someone dies.
There has to be a higher standard here.


I would never be able to do that kind of job. I just don't have the patience and people skills to do it. Heck, I don't think I could even do a full week of answering calls. I do admire the people who are SUITED to work at 9-1-1 centres for their tireless efforts. The world needs people like them.

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#171495 - 04/17/09 05:12 AM Re: Emergency operators were 'sarcastic' [Re: Chris Kavanaugh]
Tom_L Offline
Addict

Registered: 03/19/07
Posts: 690
Quote:
So, what do we as a community take from this?

It is always easy to 'monday morning quarterback'

and find fault.

A public figure dies from a gunshot wound and his family become

gun control advocates. A movie star's child contracts a

rare 'orphan disease' and they become spokespersons.

How many here are active in orienteering? Think maybe a 17 y/o

with even the rudiments of that activity would get lost?

We offer Driver's Ed in school, say no to drugs and countless

programmes to give the next generation a fighting chance on our

streets. But 'where the sidewalk ends' seems to be society's

boundary of responsibility too.


That was basically my point. The problem with our society is that people don't take responsibility for their actions. Anyone that ventures out into the wild does so at their own risk. You can't just fool around in the bush expecting to call 911 and get rescued the moment anything goes wrong. And at 17, I think a person ought to be mature enough to understand the risk. So we're back to PPPPPP.

What can we do? I'm no survival expert by any means but I've tried to share what I know with my friends and hiking buddies. I've recommended this website often in the past and introduced a fair number of people to good survival documentaries like Ray Mears and Les Stroud. I have no problem borrowing any book from my fairly sizeable survival library to people I trust. Heck, I might write my own book one day, aimed exactly at the general public/a.k.a. city folks. smile

But at the end of the day, preparation is still down to the individual. The problem is, some people see the outdoors as a playground where they can get away from the society and do whatever they want. Even if it means getting drunk, running around the woods stoned out of their mind, playing Rambo or attempting to climb a major mountain peek in the toughest winter wearing light hiking shoes and a pair of jeans. Until people sober up, accidents will happen - accidents that could easily be avoided with just a little common sense.

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#171497 - 04/17/09 05:46 AM Re: Emergency operators were 'sarcastic' [Re: Roarmeister]
tonyb Offline
For me life is my beach
Stranger

Registered: 03/27/04
Posts: 9
Loc: Australia, Cairns
Just for the hell of it I asked my youngest son 13 of age this question: Your friend rang you and told you he was lost in the bush, what do you do to help him? god bless him he responded with

1. What was your last known position
2. How long have you been traveling for
3. Are you hurt
4. Did not ask for a street address

This is from a 13 yr old who has some camping experiance and I did not tell him about this artical, now we get an idea approx where start looking.

This is realy common sence stuff that I would expect these people to ask dont you think???

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#171498 - 04/17/09 06:05 AM Re: Emergency operators were 'sarcastic' [Re: tonyb]
tonyb Offline
For me life is my beach
Stranger

Registered: 03/27/04
Posts: 9
Loc: Australia, Cairns
Look I agree Tom L there is no way in hell I would venture out without being prepared and I do.

And yes people do the wrong thing and get into trouble but this poor bloke had a mobile and managed
to contacted the emergency services but was ultimately let down by their lack of training.

Are we going to adopt the attitude oh well you didn't prepare so more fool you and you deserve what you get!!!



Edited by tonyb (04/17/09 06:29 AM)

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#171499 - 04/17/09 06:08 AM Re: Emergency operators were 'sarcastic' [Re: tonyb]
gallihand Offline
Stranger

Registered: 09/25/06
Posts: 19
Loc: Northern NJ
Originally Posted By: tonyb
This is realy common sence stuff that I would expect these people to ask dont you think???


Its common sense to us because we know how the outdoors works. I would assume a lot of people constantly reference by street only. Additionally when you're always working with that mindset I doubt it'd be easy to change the way you've always done business while also dealing with reports that use your standard system. Really the training is at fault, and that comes down to the people above them. Your son was likely trained in how to determine someone's location in the bush by listening to you or someone else at some point.

The lack of empathy and failure to obtain help with the problem is unacceptable IMO. If they can't figure out how to save the guy it should start moving towards someone who can figure it out.

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#171500 - 04/17/09 06:39 AM Re: Emergency operators were 'sarcastic' [Re: gallihand]
scafool Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 12/18/08
Posts: 1534
Loc: Muskoka
The dispatchers likely have a question sheet on the computer screen in front of them and the street address box on it has to be filled in, or the police dispatcher asks for it or some other bureaucratic reason exists in their minds.
Common sense should tell you how stupid it is to ask for an exact location from somebody who just told you they are lost.
If the kid knew where he was he would not be lost.(right?)
Tony B's son had the first question right. What is your last known location give a start, "About where do you think you are?" could work too.

But again, I think it is wrong to be trying to blame the operators. It was not just one person ignoring procedures that did this. Responsibility has to be with the people who actually had authority over the dispatchers.
To blame the 911 dispatchers instead of the 911 commissioners is like trying to blame the office receptionists for the collapse of AIG's banking business.
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