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Flood Of 9-1-1 Calls Turns Into A Good Deed

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Dispatchers at the Valley Emergency Communications Center (Utah) were answering 9-1-1 calls from a unregistered cellular phone every 10 seconds or, tallying over 4,000 in one week last month. The heavy call load tied up their 9-1-1 lines and diverted them from promptly handling other emergency calls. They enlisted the police to track down the offender, hoping to stop the calls and send the person to jail. But then, the situation quickly turned. Police traced the calls to a cell phone being used by a man with a mental disability, who was using the phone to play music on the deactivated handset. Somehow, as he listened, the man repeatedly dialed 9-1-1. Hearing that story, the dispatchers quickly raised money to buy the man an iPod and a $100 iTunes gift card so he could keep listening to his music, but without the chance to misdial 9-1-1. Read more here and here.

Photo, right: West Jordan Police Chief Douglas Diamond, left, and dispatcher Kari Bueno present David VanBibber with a Christmas present with his mother, Cheryl VanBibber, at Valley Emergency Communications Center in West Valley City on Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014.
Photo: Laura Seitz, Deseret News (click on image for more photos)

- Via Dispatch Monthly magazine

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