When you call 911, seconds matter. The clock is ticking from the moment we answer your call, take your information, notify the right units, and send them to your location. A lot has to happen in a short window of time.
That’s why we’re always looking for ways to improve our response times and get help to you faster.
In my opinion, our latest tool in that effort is one of the best advancements in technology available. We recently launched Live911 at the Volusia Sheriff’s Office, which allows deputies to hear real-time 911 calls in their assigned area.
Of all the advancements in tech in the past few years, this one may be one of the most beneficial to public safety.
Now, my deputies in the field can hear what’s going on from the moment an emergency call comes in.
Deputies who are nearby in the area of a call can see the location of the caller on a map while listening to the live audio and heading to the scene.
They’ll hear all the interactions between the caller and call-taker, including answers to questions, first-hand descriptions, emotions, and background noise.
This can cut response times when it matters most. Other agencies using this technology have already saved lives with it,including a call where a drowning child was saved before the panicked caller was even able to provide an address. The Polk County Sheriff’s Office was one of the first agencies in Florida to try Live911, and they credited it with saving three lives in the first 30 days of deployment.
Our 911 call takers and dispatchers do a fantastic job answering emergency calls with calm professionalism, gathering crucial details for all law enforcement, fire, and medical emergencies. They will continue to do that work 24 hours a day. This new Live911 program is just an added feature that gives deputies direct access to the raw audio with zero delay.
I hope you or your family never have to call 911 for help! In the event you do, please know we’re taking every step we can to ensure the most urgent emergencies get the fastest response possible.
For more info about this technology, check out some of the articles and case studies at Live911.com
Thanks and stay safe!
Sheriff Mike Chitwood