Tucson police and fire department dispatchers are working to improve response times to 911 calls and save the city money, according to city spokeswoman Lane Mandle.
Tucson Police Captain Décio Hopffer says on average the 911 dispatch centers receive about 1.3 million calls a year and by merging together, he estimates it will cut call processing times by 30 seconds.
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"We are going to have more of a generalist communication specialist that will answer the call and can basically triage whether it is police, fire or EMS and get it directly to the dispatch and where it needs to go," said Laura Baker, Assistant Chief at the Tucson Fire Department.
"I think this is something that needs to be done in consideration to technology," said Angela Jackson, TPD Communications Superintendent. "Technology continues to advance and so we as an organization need to stay on top of that."
When the merge is complete, Baker says the center will have nearly 150 dispatchers.
Although training has already begun, officials say the city council still needs to officially approve the operation.
Mandle says the merge in centers is estimated to save taxpayers $500,000.
This week is National Telecommunications Appreciation Week.
"When you call for an emergency a police officer and firefighter are the first person you see, but these employees are the unsung heroes that do the work to generate the calls and dispatch them," said Hopffer.
The call centers are looking to hire dispatchers. If interested apply here.