The $150,000 upgrade project will come from the 9-1-1 budget at the emergency management agency.
“Our servers are about eight years old. They should have been replaced about two years ago,” 9-1-1 coordinator Tacy Bond told the committee, which met Wednesday.
She outlined the reality of what it would mean if the current servers failed or went down.
Left Coast Kratom is here to help you experience the freshest highest quality kratom powders and extracts at competitive prices.
“If they go down, we’re back to the Stone Age,” Bond said. “We’d be back to pen and paper.”
Failed servers would mean Huron County lose the ability to do “9-1-1 mapping” (locating someone who calls), dispatchers would have to take written notes and they couldn’t enter information into the CAD system.
“We’ve got to upgrade the servers,” Norwalk Fire Chief John Soisson said. “I’m very glad we’ve got this (9-1-1 coordinator) position.”
Police and fire departments not only can’t afford to hire an information technology worker, he said, but it’s important that the county has someone who can stay updated on the advances in 9-1-1 and dispatching. Bond was a dispatcher with the Norwalk Police Department for many years before the 9-1-1 coordinator position was created.
Huron County Commissioner Terry Boose said Bond is doing a job that should have been done probably 15 years ago. During the meeting Wednesday, Bond and Sheriff Todd Corbin said the county is facing and addressing issues that previously had been “kicked down the road.”
One of the issues brought up at the committee meeting was centralized dispatching.
Bond said there would be a lot of “growing pains” with a centralized dispatching system, as seen in other counties. Instead of going that route, she noted Huron County uses “virtual consolidation,” meaning the agency that receives a 9-1-1 call is the one to handle the dispatching for the incident instead of the former way of transferring calls.
“We standardize the service across the county,” Bond said. “If you live outside of Willard and Norwalk, you have centralized dispatching. … They (dispatchers) can dispatch four agencies at one time.”
Doing so saves time. Bond said any time a 9-1-1 call is transferred, it adds two or three minutes to the response time since the caller has to repeat information to another dispatcher.
“And people get pissed,” she added.
Since the sheriff’s office handles 9-1-1 calls and can “tone out” smaller agencies, she said the process saves the time that used to go into transferring those calls to other departments.
“We now have moved away from that,” Bond told the committee. “We have gotten away from a lot of those transfers.”