CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA) – Dispatchers are sometimes the first voice you hear during an emergency.
“Sometimes you have no idea what’s going to be on the other end of the line when you answer,” Brent Daugherty, a telecommunicator with Champaign County said.
First responders, like Daugherty, were busy this weekend. Across Central Illinois, 18 people were hurt in shootings and one person died.
Daugherty said July 4th is a day they’re prepared to take a lot of calls. He said he has worked many times in similar situations, but this weekend wasn’t abnormal. But he said it’s not something anyone should get used to.
“Some of these things we don’t want to be normal. We want things to be as routine as possible,” he said. “I would be very happy to not take any calls on the 4th of July, but we understand that’s not going to be the case.”
Daugherty said the best thing you can do for the dispatcher is answer the questions. He said a lot of people try to give all the information at once, but it’s better to listen and then answer.