From Dispatch Magazine On-Line
"Trainee Mistakes Address, Fire Destroys Homes
A miscommunication between a 911 caller and a York County (Penn.) dispatcher in training led to an eight-minute response delay, and resulted in three row homes being destroyed by fire. Fire officials believe the fire could have been confined to the kitchen of the original caller if her call had been promptly handled, and if the calltaker had correctly verified the woman’s address. Instead, Gloria Diaz properly gave her address as “622 Wallace Street” in York. But the unnamed dispatcher believed she said, “622 Water St.,” which is in Wrightsville. The calltaker asked Diaz if she lived in York City or York Township, and Diaz only answered only, “Yes.” After other questions, the calltaker asked Diaz if she lived in Wrightsville, and she said, “Yes.” Fire units were then dispatched to the Wrightsville location. Within two minutes neighbors pulled a fire alarm box outside the actual location of the fire, and fire units were then dispatched to the correct Wallace St. address. County officials said Diaz was using an older cellular phone, so there was no location information displayed to the calltaker. Read more about the mix-up here."
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