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Pickaway County prepping for E-911 system

 
Pickaway County prepping for E-911 system
Posted Friday, February 21st 2014 @ 5pm  by WTVN Newsroom

CIRCLEVILLE, Ohio (WTVN) -- Ohio is taking a look at moving toward the next generation of 9-1-1. It means big changes for how first responders are dispatched.

Pickaway County has formed a committee to look at how the new system will work and come up with a plan of how to use it there.

"We want to make sure that moving forward these dispatchers are really ready for videos, pictures, those types of things that they'll be viewing as opposed to just picking up the telephone," said EMA Director Dave Conrad.

The new E-9-1-1 system will allow those needing emergency help to request it by text messaging as well as audio calls and video messages.

Commissioner Jay Wippel says the idea of creating this group is to make sure all stakeholders have a say in how the system is created and operated. The goal is to make sure it is efficient and cost-effective as well.

Pickaway County Sheriff Robert Radcliff worries the changes might mean creating a new 9-1-1 center that takes calls for both his department and Circleville Police and Fire. Right now dispatchers at the sheriff's office take the calls and forward them to the right spot.

"I do believe that it needs to remain where we have the staff 24/7, where we have the security, where we have the infrastructure. That's what the public wanted when they built that building," Radcliff said.

Circleville Police Chief Wayne Gray says he understands the need for upgrades, but worries about who's footing the bill.

"The residents of Pickaway County are taxed-out at this point," he said.

Once the state standards are established, each county will have two years to implement a plan for enhanced 9-1-1.

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