Dispatch errors continue as a new computer aided dispatch system is rolled out by Sno-Pac 9-1-1 to the Everett Police and Fire departments as well as emergency responders across the county. Sno-Pac 9-1-1 also handles dispatching for all police and fire agencies in north and east Snohomish County with the exception of the Washington State Patrol. Sno-Com handles dispatching for south Snohomish County cities and fire departments. The new system replaces several outdated computer aided dispatch systems and is supposed to provide instant communication between police and fire agencies, the jail and prosecutors offices. The system design began in 2009 and was to be rolled out in 2012 but was delayed. Known as New World the deployment was again delayed in the spring of 2015.
The system finally went live in the fall of 2015. In addition to the New World dispatch there was also a new system known as locution which is used to tone out fire and medic calls. Both the New World and locution systems have presented issues for the Everett Fire Department. At times the systems have crashed and the Everett Fire Department has had to staff an operations center to manually dispatch calls. Police, Fire personnel and even dispatchers have expressed frustration and confusion over the air with the system. You can hear some of that in a sampling of emergency radio traffic from the past three months here…
On Wednesday afternoon (5-11-2016) a scary situation developed when the system had problems dispatching Everett Fire personnel to aid calls and accidents. At one point an Everett ladder truck was supposed to be dispatched to a motor vehicle crash with injuries 2 blocks from Everett Fire Station 1 but no Everett ladder truck ever made it to the scene. Everett Police ended up flagging down a passing ambulance to help. That ambulance ended up transporting a 90 year old woman to the hospital with facial injuries from the crash. A Medical Services Officer from Everett Fire arrived at the scene five minutes after the call was first dispatched.
In multiple conversations, Everett Fire Chief Murray Gordon has told MyEverettNews.com that Everett Fire wants to stick with the New World system and just needs enough time to work out the issues. Given the dispatch problems on Wednesday, time may be running out.
MyEverettNews.com has requested logs of dispatch errors from the last three months from Everett Fire and Police and will follow up to try and determine the depth of the dispatch problem in Everett.