Re: “Call-takers criticized for 911 calls in Powell tragedy” (TNT, 2-9).
It’s a very difficult time for the people in our community, following the tragedy of the Powell boys’ deaths. Thus, I try to be understanding of the emotions and desire to find someone to blame for such an incident.
In reality, there is someone to blame for this horrific event – Josh Powell. Attempts to lay blame on the 911 dispatchers, the case worker, the courts or anyone else is purely emotional, in my humble opinion.
Sure, 911 dispatchers might have immediately recognized this cell phone call as a real, immediate emergency. In hindsight it’s easy to recognize, but it’s not like history hasn’t led to the training these dispatchers receive to ask the questions, to assess with nothing more than a voice on the other end of the call, if it’s a situation that warrants dispatching emergency personnel.
Perhaps standard procedure should be to immediately begin the dispatch procedures whenever a caller indicates an emergency. Our community would only need to pony up the dollars to increase the police and emergency staffs by say – 10 times?
Perhaps also, technology to instantly locate any cell phone 911 caller should be implemented, no matter the complaints regarding invasion of privacy, although I doubt any of these would have likely changed the outcome of this event.
There doesn’t always have to be someone to blame. As a community, we should strive now to improve, within our means, not try to find someone other than the perpetrator to blame.