New dispatch center enhances county emergency response

Guest Blog by Martin McCoy, Chief of the Auburn Police Department

When you have an emergency, you want a fast response. In Auburn, our emergency responses teams work hard on a daily basis to provide that for residents and businesses. And now, with our recent partnership with DeKalb County and the City of Garrett, we believe we’ll be even more equipped to monitor and respond to emergency situations.

Together, Auburn, Garrett and DeKalb County formed the new DeKalb County Central Communications Center. The center, which went live earlier this week, fields all calls for police, fire and emergency medical service throughout DeKalb County, including Auburn.

Before the new centralized center, each of us had our own dispatch center. While effective in our local areas, these individual dispatch centers limited the degree to which we could efficiently communicate with one other. And in smaller communities such as Auburn, Garrett and DeKalb County, the ability of emergency response teams to quickly communicate, track and support one another cannot be overstated. We routinely back one another up and assist in situations that require extra personnel.

Now, with the new center, we’ll not only have better communication, but better coordination. With county-wide radio and record management systems, as well as upgraded mapping technology, we’re employing best practice emergency preparedness and response protocol throughout DeKalb County.

Perhaps, best of all, this transition from three dispatch centers to one is seamless to those we serve. You still call the same numbers (911 for emergency and 260-920-3200 for non-emergencies) and should not experience any major disruption as we transition to the centralized dispatch center. And in the long run, we think all of our communities will benefit from our coordinated efforts. It’s a win-win-win.