23 Panhandle counties to see new 911 recording equipment
AMARILLO, TX (KFDA) -
Over 20 Panhandle counties will be starting 2017 off with new emergency service equipment, specifically 911 call recorders.
Officials said the transition will bring the agencies up to speed with the latest technology.
"Once upon a time we had just home phones and so we are gradually moving into cell phones and into void phones, which are phones over the internet," 911 Regional Director Michael Peters said. "There has been a lot of technology changes which have affected 911 dramatically."
Peters explains the new gear is a part of a 7 year replacement plan that will enhance a dispatcher's work flow by adding in more lines.
Right now, the call recorders have four different channels and the new ones will double with eight channels, giving dispatchers the opportunity to record not just 911 calls but a variety of calls.
The additional calls can be from a sheriffs office, police station or a fire department.
"We hope it [the new equipment] is going to be more reliable because 911 is working 24 hours a day 7 days a week." Peters said. "We replace this equipment on a standardized schedule to make sure none of it fails."
Peter said his focus is to keep all of the 911 equipment up to date and running properly year round.
"The most important thing for us is to make sure it works 24 hours a day and that those calls are answered by someone, no matter what the incident is," Peter expressed. "This is just another step to keep reliable equipment in the hands of the dispatchers that take those calls."
The new equipment will be installed during January and February of 2017.