Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Police launch revamped 911 Call Center by tweeting all dispatched calls for one hour


The Kansas City Missouri Police Department will launch their new 911 Call Center be tweeting all dispatched activity from 11 a.m. to noon Thursday.

The 911 Call Center has been undergoing renovations for nearly a year. The upgrades have been to accommodate the new city-wide radio system, which is set to go live Nov. 9. It replaces 15-year-old technology. With the old system, police could not easily communicate with neighboring law enforcement agencies. KCPD’s dispatchers had to call other agencies’ dispatchers and have them relay that information to their officers on their own radio system.

“We will have inter-operability with our sister agencies,” said Steve Hoskins, KCPD’s Communications Unit Manager. “Now we have the availability to work an incident together anywhere from western Johnson County to eastern Independence with the shared resources we’ll have available.”

The Call Center itself features upgraded consoles for calltakers and dispatchers, who must stay at their stations for long periods of time during 8- or 12-hour shifts. It also has a new video system which allows dispatchers to see live feed through KC SCOUT Traffic Cameras, security cameras set up throughout the city, weather reports, news broadcasts and more so they can better support officers in the field.

To celebrate the new 911 Call Center and demonstrate KCPD’s call volume (the Call Center received 892,283 911 calls in 2010), police will tweet every call that officers are dispatched to between 11 a.m. and noon Thursday on the police department’s Twitter account, @kcpolice or