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  • Rant about our dispatcher...

    For the love of God. It was one of those days, calls out the w***oo, and our current dispatcher, bless her heart, just can't seem to get with the program.

    It drives me nuts when she gets on the radio and starts out "____ County..." Long silence. "____ County, Romeo ##". You chime in, "Romeo ##", then she just says, "10-4." long silence. "10-4, be in route to ..blah blah blah". (I bleeped out my county and number for confidentiality purposes). If you would take just a second to get your thoughts in order before keying up the mic you wouldn't have all of us out in radioland waiting forever and wondering WTF is going on.

    Second, if you send me to a burglar alarm call, and I get there and call out that there is a suspicious vehicle and request plate information for it, it would be GREAT if you could get that information to me. At ALL. At any point in time at the call. There was no radio traffic - we weren't busy at that time -- what reason could there be for not returning the info to me? Also, after I requested info on this vehicle, I not only didn't hear anything back about the car, but I wasn't checked on for over 10 minutes. Nothing. Thank GOD it wasn't a bad situation.

    I just get frustrated when i have to call out 3 times before I get acknowledged to go ahead with my traffic. Quite annoying, and an officer safety issue, IMO. I would understand if we were really busy, but if we aren't busy, I don't think there's an excuse.


    Anyone else have issues with their dispatchers they would like to air out??

    Sorry for the rant, I just found this supremely annoying today.

  • #2
    Ummmm....yup.

    And my complaints are similar to yours.

    I can tolerate them having a bad night...or a busy night. But there are some officer safety issues that drive me up the friggin wall (much like your alarm call).

    Comment


    • #3
      Aw, quit 'cher bitchin'. If a goofball dispatcher is the worst of your problems, you're doing fine.

      We used to have one (she finally retired) who was slow to get the call out, and even if it was a hot call, she would slowly as molasses put out the information, while you were getting jacked up and going into cardiac arrest, etc.


      Romeoxxxx........shooting in progress..................break...............cont inuing.............shooting in progress.............123 Main St.........................subject shot in the head..................break....................bur ning baby also............................................ne ed a unit to back........etc.

      Comment


      • #4
        My only problem with one of our dispatchers is her LACK OF ENUNCIATION. I can barely understand her most nights, and literally have to 10-9 her. Does me no good if I can't understand the WORDS THAT ARE COMING OUT OF HER MOUTH. Our Chief asked us to write down our 'complaints/concerns' about dispatch. These were then supposed to be addressed at a meeting with all dispatchers. She has become worse it seems since that meeting.

        Comment


        • #5
          Having worked both sides of the radio....I can understand complaints from both sides.

          Typically, complains by dispatchers about patrol are ignored. Patrol walks on water compared to dispatch. Not to toot my own horn, but I've been a pretty damn good dispatcher in my day.

          On the flip side, my dispatchers do a terrific job, IMHO. Except when I try to run somebody. Even when I'm first in line it takes FOREVER.

          Comment


          • #6
            Ah the joys of Communication! Ever notice how it is the first thing to break down in a real crisis? LOL You figure out real quick who REALLY knows what to do.

            Your safety still boils down to one person.............You! Communications Officers are there to assist, most do and take their job seriously.
            "a band is blowing Dixie double four time You feel alright when you hear the music ring"


            The real deal

            Outshined Pujulesfan Bearcat Chitowndet Sgt Slaughter jthorpe M-11 Lt Borelli L-1Sgt CHP Nikk Smurf Presence1 IcecoldblueyesKimble LADEP ateamer ChiCity R.A.B. Jenners IrishMetal GoldBadge willowdared Monkeybomb PhilipCal pullicords Chit2001 Garbageman Narco CruiserClass Fuzz 10-42Trooper Tex4720 irishlad2nv bajakirch OnThe gurmpyirishmanNYIlliniSgtScott31 CityCopDCcgh6366 FJDave

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            • #7
              Rule number one: Don't ever p i s s off the dispatcher...or you will be on the short end of the stacked up crap calls.

              Is your dispatcher in training?

              Some don't read the call prior to dispatching them. I don't know how big your agency is but the call taker might be different from the actual dispatcher. If that's the case, they can only dispatch what info is provided. Or maybe the info is still being updated.

              Dispatchers also multi task althought it may appear to be uneventful on our side. We as patrol officer often talk on the phone/radio and to a citizen all at once. Perhaps she didn't hear you give out the license plate. A quick.."Did I miss my traffic?" usually works. If you honestly think she is being unattentive then order a copy of the tapes. Does this happen to others or just you?

              Not checking on your status is an officer safety issue. Your beat partners can also request dispatch to check on you. "What is so and so's status?"

              I've sat on both sides of the mic and know that I'd rather be on patrol than at dispatch. There are good and bad dispatchers, bad meaning lose track of units, difficulties in stress situations etc. You'll figure out who knows what they are doing. I have the utmost respect for most of them. They are your lifeline and will do their best to keep you safe. But when the so so one's plug in and you hear their voice...you sigh and hope the next rotation comes really fast.

              With time comes experience for everyone....if it's pure inattention then it needs to be addressed by the dispatch sup and your sup.

              Be safe out there my sistah!
              This profession is not for people looking for positive reinforcement from the public. Very often it can be a thankless job and you can't desire accolades, because those are not usually forthcoming. Just do your job to the best of your ability and live with the decisions you've made.

              Comment


              • #8
                I get tired of our guys who've been doing this for near a year now continuing to not get important information from callers.

                Scene: report of shots fired in an area where we've had them before. people shooting in the air mostly, just discharging inside city limits probably, but still we gotta go find these guys!!!

                "HQ to bravo 4, we have a caller on the line who said that they saw someone in the woods shooting off rounds into the air. Caller said he saw them from his balcony"

                ....

                "4 to HQ, what's the caller's apartment number?"
                ....
                "caller did not advise. will attempt to call back"

                That's one example. I understand if you miss that one once or twice, especially if you're new. But every blankety blank blank shift!?!?

                Comment


                • #9
                  Not to one up you, but your dispatchers don't check on you for over ten minutes?? We've had ours not check on us for over 30 so we usually check on each other...how's that?

                  the sad thing is, the battle cry of our county is, "that's the county for ya." It's accepted that things are like this, it's accepted we answer domestics by ourselves, it's accepted we work like that and it's pathetic that is what is accepted.
                  Moooooooooooo, I'm a goat

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I should have said in my post that a majority of our dispatchers are great...asking the right questions of the caller and getting that information to us. I know they get busy in there...even when it sounds quiet...I understand that. But I do hate it when I am asked to repeat something and I hear a TV on in the background, etc.

                    The only time I ever complained to a supervisor about our dispatch was when I got a call for a man with a gun call and when I arrived on scene, I asked for a 10-3 (keep the channel open). I was given the 10-3....and about 20 seconds into me making contact with the guy, the same dispatcher began dispatching a parking comlaint in our downtown area.

                    Someone else complained on my behalf when I drove up on a fight in progress and called out with it. I ended up fighting with two guys. I was holding my own in the fight but was unable to key up my radio. A taxi driver sees this and calls 911. He tells the dispatcher "There is an officer on xxxxxx St fighting with two men" The dispatcher replied "Yes sir, we are aware of the fight" and hung up on him. He called back and said "I dont think you understand....the cop is fighting and needs help". "Sir, I told you the first time, we know about the fight" click.

                    As for checking on us...the only time they do it is when there is another call holding and they check our status to see if we cleared it out.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      We have one who has the nickname of "sleepy [name]". Her enunciation and listening skills are deplorable. She slurs and mumbles most of what she says. Fortunately it doesn't take forever to start understanding most of it, but you can call out on traffic as clear-as-day with your own enunciation and she'll still ask "last unit repeat?"

                      She's moving to my shift for the last trimester of the year I've heard. I'm dreading that. I've gotten so fat and happy with the dispatchers I've had for the first 8 months...

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Windex
                        I ask multiple times for a vehicle description only to get "none available" .... eventually reading the call text i was able to get the description of the vehicle. I was NOT happy.
                        As much as possible, I have calls sent directly to my MDT. I don't have to listen to the dispatcher stumble over 3-syllable words and I pick up information they'd otherwise omit.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Yeah, our town is fairly small, and the way dispatch is set up is that there is one for police, one for county sheriff's office, one for EMS, and one for fire. Unless the dispatcher is extremely busy, I'm pretty sure she takes the phone calls too... She often neglects to gather important information from the caller - stuff that would be really important to know.

                          It isn't uncommon for us to have to remind her to get info, to ask her to call the complainant back to find out some more info, etc.

                          Being dispatched to something in my town and left alone for 10 mins seems unacceptable to me, especially if i ask her to check on something that seems suspicious - like a car that isn't normally at this location, sitting there, with a hot engine. :P All the what ifs running through my head while I'm sitting there waiting for the car info to come back were quite frustrating, when you realize I could have been in a fight for my life right then without her having a care in the world.


                          I asked my FTO, did i do something to tick off Dispatch?? I felt like she was ignoring my transmissions all day, she got snarky with me when I asked, 8 hrs into shift, if it was clear for lunch, and then she left me without any info on this burglar alarm dealy, and he said no, she's just sorry. I know there is probably a lot going on that I don't know about, but I also have been inside the dispatch center, and I know they have cell phones in there, a television, etc... I'm just asking for a little more focus on the task at hand.

                          :P

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Out of three, one is constantly forgetting information - or just plain not asking for it:

                            "5, please call Bob at 987-6543."

                            "Is this a code call, or something to 10-6?"

                            "Not sure on that..."

                            "Do you have a last name on the subject?"

                            "None given" (she didn't ask for it, I guarantee it)

                            Long pause from me by this point as I try to stifle my anger.

                            "Headquarters from 5, do you have a reference?"

                            "Negative...subject just requesting a call."

                            That stuff really gets old. I've even had to ask what TOWN the person was calling from (we've got quite a few exchanges that cover multiple towns), only to be told "not sure on that...". Good Lord, you'd think after a while some folks would get a clue.

                            The other two are pretty good, in fact the senior gal is EXCELLENT and takes great pains to watch out for the gang in the field.

                            My 'favorite' was the stereotypical 'dumb blonde' who would put me on hold after "can you put me through to the Chief? He just paged me." to which she'd "just a moment, please." Cue the music...wait a few minutes...she'd answer again "(bureau) how may I help you?" "Yeah, um, Jane it's me. I'm holding for he Chief." "Oh, that's right! Just a moment, please." Bear in mind by now I'm picturing her sitting at her SPOTS console which is right in front of the Chief's office!! More music for a while...then the SECOND TIME she answers "(bureau) how may I help you?" At that point I really was kind of speechless..."Um, Jane? It's me. Can you just check in the Chief's office and see if he's available? He paged me." "Chief (Jones)? Oh, he just left. Can I take a message?" Think about this: the Chief had to walk by her to get out of the office, and three times she is told I am holding because the Chief paged me!

                            I kid you not, I had that phone conversation about five years ago. We did not have a 'direct line' in to the Chief's office at the time, which certainly would have helped. We do now.

                            She's no longer with us.
                            The opinions expressed here are from the individual only and do not represent the view of any agency that the poster may be affiliated with

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Patience, Presence. LOL Yes, we all get frustrated with them, but I assure you, we drive them nuts as well. Sometimes they have bad days.

                              One of ours, a very good friend of mine, had a brain fart one day. An Officer came over the air in a rush and said, "*****, I'm out at [insert intersection], send me another unit" and as he keys off, you hear him yelling at someone. She comes on the air and says (rather snotty like) "123, did you clear your last call?"

                              Seriously? When it was all over, I had to call her and ask "WTF were you thinking?"
                              sigpic

                              I don't agree with your opinion, but I respect its straightforwardness in terms of wrongness.

                              Comment

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