It isn’t that bad in San Francisco, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it came to that. Lee’s urgent fix for SF’s 911 crisis remains hung up – San Francisco Chronicle
So in the world of 911, you are supposed to answer 90% of calls in 10 seconds or less. San Francisco is only doing that 75% of the time. (More statistics are not available, so it is hard to know how bad it really is.)
Usually my “Calling 911” posts are about how someone called 911 and nothing good happened, or I consider the wait time between the call and police arriving to do anything helpful. But a couple of things caught my eye regarding this story.
1. The city budget is 10 billion dollars. That is really a lot of money. What the heck is it going to, if not to provide 911 services?
2. Morale in the 911 dispatch center sucks. Doesn’t sound like it is going to be getting any better. And can you blame the folks who work there?
[One dispatcher who has decided he is leaving] said that other than during planned vacation time, he has not had a single weekend off in his 12 years on the job. He said he had to “jump through a lot of hoops” to attend his brother’s wedding in Hawaii this year, even with several months’ notice.
That sucks. It is mostly because there are 110 folks working in a 911 center that should have 165. They got 7 new dispatchers trained, and 5 people quit or retired this year. At that rate it will take a long time to fill up that staff.
They offer things like yoga classes at lunch, but only management has the time to attend. Dispatchers are stuck at their desks.
There are meetings and task forces and all kinds of things sponsored by the mayor of SF to raise morale, but you have to wonder if they are really serious about doing anything real.
Curiously, no dispatchers have been invited to attend the meetings and are not involved in crafting the plan.
What could go wrong?