An analysis of 9-1-1 calls made by students and teachers at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School as an active shooter was on the premises showed just three calls out of at least 15 went to the closest agency, the Broward County Sheriff's Office, while most went instead to dispatchers in Coral Springs, Fla., based on tower proximity. Former Broward County Emergency Management Director Chuck Lanza listened to call recordings and commended the "calm, reassuring" manner of the dispatchers while noting the failure to transfer calls to the sheriff's office may have caused problems.
Luzerne County, Pa., is considering hiring MCM Consulting Group to oversee a proposed $20 million upgrade to the region's emergency radio system, although the county has not fully secured the $380,357 fee. The consultant's duties, which would conclude when a vendor is selected, would involve project design and oversight.
Residents of Bethlehem, Cohoes and Colonie in Albany County, N.Y., including state Reps. Joseph O'Brien and Paul Burgdorf, say dropped calls -- especially to 9-1-1 -- present a risk to residents that should be studied by the county sheriff. "We got a great system and we have great infrastructure, but the other part of the puzzle -- the cell connection -- is where our problem lies," said Albany County Sheriff Craig Apple.
The responsibilities of 9-1-1 operators have evolved, growing more technically and emotionally demanding, which justifies a change of title and classification to "protective service professionals," write Rep. Norma Torres, D-Calif., and Federal Communications Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel. Changing the profession's identity within the Office of Management and Budget and removing it as a clerical job would be an important step in mitigating shortages of operators, they write.
The text-to-9-1-1 services introduced this week in Lucas County, Ohio, will cost about $15,800 the first year and $8,000 in subsequent years. Shannon Seger of Deaf Services Center of Northwest Ohio thanked operators for learning acronyms common in the hearing-impaired community and said she "encourages all counties in Ohio to transition into this digital technology, so we can all have access to emergency services when we need it, especially when we're away from home."
Bold ideas are often picked apart until there's nothing unique left, unless leaders adopt a curious mindset that gives every proposal a chance, writes Jennifer V. Miller. "Even if the idea doesn't come to fruition, your team will see that you support their innovations and are willing to give them the needed incubation time for an idea's promise to show itself," she writes.
The central park in Bangkok, Thailand, has been designed to help mitigate flooding in the city center using slopes to funnel water into artificial wetlands, a retention pond and an underground tank. "It's not about getting rid of floods or engineering solutions of building a big dam, but it's about how [we] can live with water," says park architect Kotchakorn Voraakhom.
Officials in North Bay, Ontario, Canada, have outlawed Phos-Chek, a foam-based simulated snow product used by filmmakers in the city after a review that determined the product caused damage to plants along the city's waterfront. David Euler, the city's managing director of engineering, environmental service and works, says the city will work with production crews to find a safe alternative.
Residents may have differing viewpoints on the value of adding a space for dogs, so community engagement is important to gather these diverse opinions. Creating a dog run may be a good solution for catering to the needs of pet owners in densely packed urban environments.
About 70% of the hikers surveyed at Adirondack Park in New York favored wilderness protection rather than allowing for unlimited recreation, according to a survey from the Adirondack Council and Colgate University's Upstate Institute. Additionally, 80% of the respondents said they want more information on proper trail use.