Turmoil at Central County Dispatch Stl Co

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KeyWest35

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Just heard that all is not well with Central County Fire Dispatch. Seems some of the founding districts are having dissension among them about remaining or possibly pulling out and going to the County Police Dispatch center in the new EOC. I mentioned this about the possibility of police dispatching the FD sometime back but was told by some on here that I didn't know what I was talking about. Of course I couldn't reveal my source but it was from a very reliable one involved in county government and that was way before they took over other dispatch agencies. The fear is that if departments move to the Police dispatch it will hurt Central County fiscally. I personally believe that St Louis County PD could do a faster, better and cheaper job of dispatching fire agencies.
 
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There has ALWAYS been some degree of turmoil there. Go back 10 years and there was a movement to place an overseer between the executive director and the board. It died off and things coasted along. Perhaps this is a bit of the growing pains that the organization experienced by picking up the other regional centers and agencies in Franklin and St. Louis Counties. History has shown that some districts will ping-pong between hosts that will give them "most favored nation" status, even if they were founding members of the dispatching center.

Look at the 1997 drama in St. Charles County where the county argued that it collected tax revenue and that districts that used the dispatch and alarm "incorporated" versus the "department of" were imposing a double tax on their residents. Eventually, in 1998, every agency there went to the county's department and abandoned the agency, even though they had a founding stake in it.

It was only a matter of time when the unified radio system project funding could be used as leverage to bring everyone under one roof.

I will say that Central County has been the organization that everyone's tried to emulate and it's hired a lot of the talent the region had to offer. Time will tell.
 

KeyWest35

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My friend just called and told me its no secret or hearsay anymore. Its in the current edition of News Magazine network. Read it and you be the judge if there isn't turmoil.
 
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scanman1958

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Not getting into the political part of it (which I am not privy to anyway) I will say that from a scanner buff point of view trying to listen to CC911 is quite a chore. Signals fade in and out on occasion and sometimes the signal just doesn't get out. I am not sure where the tower(s) are located now (if they have changed at all from the previous agencies) but my gut feeling is the signal issue may be the result of all the computer connections made to get all the agencies linked up together. Just a hunch. Nothing to argue about.

Also the new and improved CC911 has tons of background noise that was never audible when any of the other agencies dispatched themselves. Heck, these dispatchers may even be overworked as far as we know. Seems like they are always dispatching. Yes, that's what they do but it just seems busier.

I have also heard some south county fire fighters talk about bad signals and missing calls when they are not in the fire house. Not good.

There probably is a lot more to what is going on out at CC911 but my gut feeling is that more departments will be leaving. Guess we will have to wait and see.
 
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I don't know what sites they are using or if they continued using some of the old sites that South County or North Central had. Right now, KBG256 is still an active license and hasn't been cancelled or transferred, although they listed Central County as control point #2. They are KAK618's control point #3. If there is still a board, which is probably the fire districts, and they "contracted" with CCE911, they can still use those sites and licenses through probably leased tielines. They were supposed to back each other up when they were still operating.

I forget which one, but one of them might have been simulcast. If you're outside the area, there would be sharp fades and maybe even distortion. If the lines aren't equalized just right, the sound might be mushy. I think this was a very quick job at putting something up on the air.

All of it is politics.
 

pgnsucks

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Having worked in a dispatch center I can say the public & those in the field will suffer in the end.

That is if consolidation/cost cutting occurs at this location.

In a workforce reduction consolidation the experienced dispatchers will be forced out. Then younger cheaper less experienced dispatchers will be hired. Training curves will be greatly reduced and ready or not the new hires will be put on a desk. I dispatched & trained new hires it was always do more with less. Serving the public or the field was always secondary.
 

PVPD730

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Having worked in a dispatch center I can say the public & those in the field will suffer in the end.

That is if consolidation/cost cutting occurs at this location.

In a workforce reduction consolidation the experienced dispatchers will be forced out. Then younger cheaper less experienced dispatchers will be hired. Training curves will be greatly reduced and ready or not the new hires will be put on a desk. I dispatched & trained new hires it was always do more with less. Serving the public or the field was always secondary.
It's definitely a scary situation for sure! Hopefully whatever political BS is going on down there doesn't cost an LEO/Firefighter, or heck even a citizen their life. I've personally seen what happens when a new dispatch hire gets rushed through training. Sh*t ain't pretty! Unfortunately, it's quite common for this to happen at some of the consolidated 911 centers (even more so at small agencies).
 

pgnsucks

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It's definitely a scary situation for sure! Hopefully whatever political BS is going on down there doesn't cost an LEO/Firefighter, or heck even a citizen their life. I've personally seen what happens when a new dispatch hire gets rushed through training. Sh*t ain't pretty! Unfortunately, it's quite common for this to happen at some of the consolidated 911 centers (even more so at small agencies).
Well we went from 12 dispatchers for 1.7 million households and around 1000 in the field down to 8 and then 4 on the 2300-0700 shift. I had to handle 6 radio channels 12 phones internal & external along with field units. This was for 5 AOR's (Areas of Responsibility)

I still scan and listen because I used to perform the job. It's painful as I have been listening to a newer or not-really-qualified dispatcher. The time on each call is averaging 30 seconds+ instead of 5-7. That may not seem like a lot but it is if a dispatcher is tied up from an outside unit.

Emergency alerts required a response in 1 minute or less. However with workloads this time would increase. Tons of investigations as all radio, phone and computer activity was recorded.; Still you can only deal with so much at one time.

Even on the county or city level it's all about cost cutting not quality. We averaged a questionable fatality every 3 years because of response times. However the public does not realize what is going on behind the curtain.
 
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