CHP Dispatchers Being Deluged With Bizarre Calls
POSTED: 10:48 am PST March 31, 2006
OAKLAND -- California Highway Patrol dispatchers are facing a growing number of 911 calls each day that have nothing to do with police emergencies -- a trend officials say could be dangerous when there is a real need for aid.
CHP public safety dispatcher supervisor Daphne Thomas said the agencies Bay Area switchboard handles about 6,000 calls a day with some 800 generally having to do with people being locked out of their apartment, asking recommendations for restaurants, seeking a traffic report, ordering pizzas or having some kind of utility problem.
Sgt. Wayne Ziese said each of those calls is taking up value time and effort from dispatchers.
"Every time a 911 call is answered, it ties up a line and a dispatcher," Ziese said. "That means another call can't be answered right away."
Some Bay Area cities are now taking their own 911 calls from cell phone users to help lighten the load on the dispatch center. Union City police will begin taking calls next month. San Francisco, San Jose, and Alameda are also taking their own calls. To get an idea of the kind of call the CHP is handing click on the audio link at the top.
what the hell is wrong with these people!? Restaurant Recommendations?!?