After ten years answering 911 calls in Key West, Florida Michael Beattie decided there had to be a better way.
“The worst calls are the ones where you can give no help” he says. And those calls are the ones where panicked callers demand to be transferred to other jurisdictions.
“There’s an intruder in my house in Chicago…”
“My mother just had a heart attack in Puerto Rico…”
“My father was in an accident in St Augustine…”
“I haven’t heard from my brother in a week. He lives in Los Angeles…”
They are all stories with no outcomes because the best advice is try Google and hope someone answers the line you called.
911 centers aren’t always part of a police station which is why when you reach an administrative number the message might advise you, “If you have an emergency hang up and dial 911…” Which is no help at all of you are out of town or out of state. That’s why Beattie invented 911Buddy®, using his own on the job experience with thousands of 911 calls. The idea is to make those calls a little less taxing for callers and dispatchers with 911Buddy® on the line.
A passionate advocate for the 911 system, Beattie has answered tens of thousands of emergency calls in his career, received commendations and awards for his leadership in the Key West Police 911 center, and is an APCO qualified Communications Training Officer.
He is in the dispatch center from 6pm till dawn. “Nightshift is where the action is and that’s where I like to be.” Answering 911 calls can be as immensely rewarding as it can also be stressful, night after night. .
He is the author of “Your 911 Checklist”.
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