AFD To Get A New System To Improve Response Time

If you have an emergency during or after a storm or a car accident or medical situation, the time it takes first responders to reach you may soon be shorter.

Earlier this week, the Amarillo City Commission approved a measure to buy the new system, which will be outfitted for every fire station in the city.

Just hearing the call is difficult for firefighters.  AFD District Chief Don Preston says, "we've got some old speakers, in parts of the station you can't hear, and so when the bells go off, you receive an alarm, you go stand in one part of the station and you can hear the call come over."

Lieutenant Mike Goodson says, "we all hear everything differently, one guy will hear 506, one guy will hear 906."

Instead of the old radio-based system, a computer-based system will be installed, enabling firefighters hear the call more clearly.

AFD Chief Steve Ross says, "you have a lot more speakers to where you can hear it everywhere in the station and you'll be able to see the address and call type."

Preston says, "you'll be able to walk toward the truck the entire time."

Not only that, but monitors will be set up in stations and in trucks, so fighters can see the address as well as hear it.

Ross says, "we'll eliminate mistakes and that's what this will do is we'll get it right, we won't go in error to the wrong address, we'll get it right the first time."

In some cases, that could make the difference between life and death.

Fire Department Chief Ross says they hope to get that new system bought and installed as soon as possible.