‘Round The Clock Service
The busy society that we find ourselves part of creates lots of demands for services and assistance, and getting the proper responses for requests and acting as a central clearing house for numerous service agencies. To find a true one-stop location for such an organization, one merely needs to look for the radio tower adjacent to the Palo Alto County Sheriff’s Office.
The staff of the Palo Alto County Communications Center answered a total of 5,996 calls for services during the 2010 calendar year, according to Palo Alto County Chief Deputy Todd Suhr. Along with 9-1-1 emergency calls, the Communications Center operators field calls for not only the Palo Alto County Sheriff’s Office, but also for the Emmetsburg and West Bend Police Departments, along with the various fire departments in the county communities and emergency medical services throughout the county, including ambulance services. Operators also field calls for county and city road and street maintenance, as well as gas and water utilities in Emmetsburg and Graettinger. Calls are also routed to the Iowa Department of Transportation, as well as state agencies, such as the Iowa State Patrol and Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation.
During the past year, the most frequent call fielded by the Communications Center was requests for ambulance services, with 645 calls during the year. Calls for an agency assist, or a situation where one entity assists another, totaled 609. Calls for assistance to motorists were the third most common call during the year, with 604 requests being received by the dispatch center operators.
Requests for information of various types totaled 410 and the fifth most common call was categorized as miscellaneous, with 332 calls received. Animal complaints were the sixth most common call with 311 complaints received during the year and requests for overnight parking consideration checked in at number seven on the list with 242 calls received. The eighth most common call involved accidents with some type of property damage, with 221 calls received. Requests to transport individuals totaled 174, the ninth most common call, and calls regarding suspicious circumstances being reported by the public was the tenth most common call of the year, with 128 calls being received.
For the record, a total of 127 fire calls were received by the Communications Center during the past year, along with 127 9-1-1 hang-up calls. Officials remind residents that 9-1-1 is for emergency use only. For all other types of calls, contact the Communications Center through the Palo Alto County Sheriff’s office at 712-852-3535.