New 911 technology now being utilized in Waukesha Co.: “The process is going faster”

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WAUKESHA -- A 911 call is essentially a search-and-rescue task, as dispatchers must find the caller and send help. The majority of 911 calls are no longer placed from land-line telephones -- making the task more difficult to compete. There's been an upgrade at the Waukesha County Communications Center -- and they're using new technology to get you help as quickly as possible.

Waukesha County Communications Center

Waukesha County Communications Center

On average, nearly 15,000 calls come into the Waukesha County Communications Center every month, and just recently, the system was upgraded to the new "Motorola Solutions Emergency CallWorks Callstation."

"It`s a new way for dispatchers to sort of go about their business in a way that saves them time and essentially keeps us safer," Eric Torbenson with Motorola Solutions Inc. said.

ECW for short is a browser-based platform that combines call taking, incident management and mapping systems into a single platform.

Waukesha County Communications Center

Waukesha County Communications Center

"So the process is going faster," Christine Bannister, supervisor at Waukesha County Communications Center said.

Waukesha County Communications Center

Waukesha County Communications Center

The CallWorks Callstation allows dispatchers to quickly determine the caller's location before answering.

"What it does is, it gives us a picture of exactly where the calls are coming from within the whole county -- and so we can see if there are 10-15 calls from a freeway accident and then one outlier that`s maybe in the far northwest -- OK, that is probably something different, maybe another customer who needs help on our 911 line and so the dispatchers have the ability now to priorities those calls coming in rather than picking them up as they have rung into the queue," Bannister said.

Waukesha County Communications Center

Waukesha County Communications Center

The new technology will get Waukesha County read for "Next Generation 911," which will allow citizens to send more digital information.

"Which allow us to pick up text messages, let`s say, from customers that maybe can`t call 911 would be able to text," Bannister said.

The new technology will allow dispatchers, police officers, firefighters and other first responders to better manage critical incidents.

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