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The original item was published from 3/14/2022 4:05:21 PM to 3/29/2022 12:00:02 AM.

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City of Durango News Flash

Posted on: March 15, 2022

[ARCHIVED] 911 Communications Center installs technology to speed up emergency response time

911 Communications Center installs RapidSOS program

The Durango-La Plata Emergency Communications Center recently installed a system that uses new technology to help reduce emergency response time. 

“Seconds matter in our line of work,” Derrick Walker, 911 Communications Director said.

The RapidSOS program, which went live March 9, allows 911 dispatchers to locate a caller immediately and usually within 15 feet or less of their location.

“We are now able to reduce seconds, and sometimes minutes, off our response times. Ultimately, improving response time and saving lives,” Walker said.

The technology most 911 call centers rely on today was developed nearly 50 years ago and requires a cellular caller to stay on the line for at least 30 seconds before a general location could be determined.

“This new system is a huge upgrade,” Walker said. “We have had situations in the past where callers don’t know exactly where they are during an emergency. This new system can now pinpoint cellular callers so we can send immediate response.”

Calls to the Communication Center have been increasing, along with the Durango population.

Calls for service in 2020: 69,741

Calls for service in 2021: 80,255

Calls for service from Jan. 1 through Feb. 28 this year in 2022: 14,192


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