By Jeff Rebitski, Staff Writer
Fremont County- Did you ever wonder what happens after you dial 911? The Director of Operations at Frontier Ambulance Service in Riverton, Diane Lane, spent some time explaining the process to the 12 people in attendance at Thursday night’s meeting held at the Frontier Ambulance Service Headquarters.
The simple concept of 911 bringing the necessary emergency management personnel is complicated here in Riverton as so many agencies may be involved and some of the distances are greater than normal. “The call is routed through the dispatch center in Riverton which is the 3rd busiest in the State of Wyoming. The dispatcher must then make the determination of where to send the call next, who to notify and what support agencies are available.
In most cases, the county is covered by the Fremont County Sheriff’s Office and backup is through the adjacent counties or city agencies. BIA is called for all Wind River Reservation calls with Lander PD, Riverton PD and their respective Fire Departments backing up the calls if needed.
The one thread in all of these scenarios, is that Frontier Ambulance handles all the calls for service if medical support is deemed necessary. The service operates 5 complete vehicles at all times. 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. This places logistical challenges on the staff and management, but they do the job in spite of challenges, says Lane.
One of the challenges they face is locating the addresses when out in the remote county regions of our community. Lane advises that each resident make sure their “Fire Numbers” are current and clear, with address numbers on the house.
The most reliable resource they use is the triangulation of the cell signal. By using the towers and the caller’s phone, they can typically locate someone even in the remote forested or desert regions. As most of us have experienced, Google Maps is not always accurate.
The overarching feeling in the meeting is that all the local emergency service agencies work together and depend on each other for support. This is a community and as a community they operate to serve the people of Fremont County. These agencies have one purpose, to keep the citizens safe and alive in times of struggle.
411 for 911 is a document that can assist a member of the emergency services team in the event of a crisis. This document should be posted someplace that can be easily seen and includes biographical and medical information including medications and chronic medical conditions. Do Not Resuscitate orders should be posted with this document as well as emergency contacts. All this is to assist the responding emergency services members in the execution of their duties.
Wyoming currently has 38 PSAP’s or Public Service Answering Points. They are managed by skilled, well trained individuals who take their jobs seriously and are dedicated to serving the public with the high standards established by the IAED or International Academies of Emergency Dispatch. For more than 40 years, the IAED has been the standard-setting organization for emergency dispatch and response services worldwide, and is the leading body of emergency dispatch experts. We are, first and foremost, a member-driven association working to serve the public through the professional development of dispatchers. We’re home to the top leaders, specialists, practitioners, and authorities of the industry. Our various boards and councils work on behalf of the membership—and in coordination with other influential public safety organizations—to ensure that the comprehensive system of emergency dispatching is as safe, fast, effective, and up to date as possible.