DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Officials in Dallas are taking a closer look at improvements made to the city’s 911 system on Monday. A public safety committee is looking over the revisions after several indictments last year prompted calls for change. A number of callers desperately tried to report emergencies through 911, but were unable to get through.
A woman woke up on July 4 to find her house on fire. Several neighbors dialed 911 for help, but many of them just heard a busy signal. Some people became so concerned that they ran to the nearest fire station and started banging on the door. Emergency crews arrived nine minutes after the first calls went through, but it was not soon enough. The home was a total loss.
Situations like this prompted changes to the 911 system.
Now, the goal is to answer 90 percent of all 911 calls within 10 seconds. Also, all 911 lines now have a recorded message, asking callers to stay on the line — do not hang up — if waiting for an answer. And there is now a two-ring standard. Calls into 911 should get an answer or the recorded message within the first two rings.
Police personnel have also been added to the 911 system to give the department some new perspective.
Last September, it took 911 operators an average of 15 seconds to answer a call. There has already been improvement to the system. Just last month, that average was reduced to just two seconds.
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