Snohomish County Executive Aaron Reardon has declared this week - April 14-20, 2013 - Public Safety Telecommunications Week in honor of the work performed by SNOCOM 911 and SNOPAC 911.
Each year SNOCOM 911 and SNOPAC 911 receive more than 630,000 calls for police, fire or emergency medical services. These two 911 centers provide 24-hour emergency communications between residents in need and emergency responders.
"When an emergency occurs, residents want fast response and care," Reardon said. "Our residents count on 911 dispatchers to make critical decisions quickly while maintaining their poise and compassion.
"The commitment of our 911 dispatchers to public service is one part of making Snohomish County a great, safe place to live and work," Reardon added. "We thank them for their work."
Residents can help 911 dispatchers by being prepared when they call:
* Know your location. Be prepared to tell the 911 dispatcher the location of the emergency. If you don't have an exact street address, use intersections, building landmarks, business names, or mile markers to help identify the location. Remember, cell phones can't always be used to determine location.
* Stay calm and be prepared to answer questions.
* Follow all instructions given by dispatchers.
* Only call 911 for emergencies.
* If you accidentally call 911, stay on the line so the dispatcher can confirm there's no emergency.
* Interpreter services may be available. Prepare before an emergency occurs. Learn to say in English the type of emergency service you need - fire, police or medical - and how to say the language you speak. The 911 dispatcher will try to connect you to an interpreter as quickly as possible.