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News : Texas County 911 Center Complete on Schedule Despite Tragedy
Houston, MO USA, July 22, 2015 -- Texas County 911 dispatchers will soon be providing fast and efficient dispatching in a new center. And county officials are amazed construction was done on schedule, following a major tragedy.
"I think the new technology is really going to help with response time because of just the fact that everything's right there in front of you," says Donna Robertson, Texas County Emergency Services Director.
The technology is still being installed, but county officials are surprised construction was completed on schedule. Texas County Presiding Commissioner Fred Stenger says, "To see it where it's at today is pretty amazing with everything that went on."
The job was being done by the Shriver Companies. In late February, three Shrivers, including owner Darrell Shriver, were killed along with four others in the Tyrone shooting spree. Stenger says, "The very next day after the tragedy, one of their employees called and, I'm sure this is on your mind. Just wanted you to know that the family has already met, we're going to continue with construction."
The new call center fills the space that used to be the Texas County jail and sheriff's department and is about three times the size of the current 911 center. "Basically what we started with was an ambulance bay and a sleep room, and so we've outgrown it years ago," says Robertson.
If the dispatchers need to stay the night for any reason, they'll even have cots and showers available. "You know, you get off at midnight and the roads are bad, they've actually slept in the office somewhere," says Robertson.
On top of fire and ambulance dispatch, the center will also take on police calls. "Our hope is this will be the premier public safety call center for the region," says Stenger.
Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
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Published: Thursday, July 23, 2015