1. #26
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    As a dispatcher myself, I cannot believe dispatch did not confirm they recieved the page. Maybe it was busy but each and every call should be confirmed that it was recieved no matter how big or small your department is.
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  2. #27
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    Agreed. I'm also a Dispatcher and it dosn't matter how busy you are, once you dispatch that call your policies probably say, or should say, you need to make sure someone acknowledges the dispatch. Just because you give out the call doesn't mean someone received it, they need to acknowledge it.

    I still would like to see the details of this as they become available.

  3. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by britfan1
    This sounds like a definite failure at the dispatch level...basic and simple fact
    You get what you pay for. These simple "failures" have increased with the nationwide movement of consolidated dispatch centers. DC is among them.

  4. #29
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    Were they getting Tx at the center? If the worker called it in was it maybe given out as a transfer (if they do that in DC). Just wondering.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cozmosis

    Cassandra Bailey, 39, was waiting for an ambulance at the Capitol Hill Dialysis Center on N Street Southeast on March 14, where she went there three times a week for dialysis, according to Antonio Evans, a friend, and Brenda Bailey, Cassandra's sister.

    Brenda Bailey and Evans said they arrived at 5:25 p.m. and were told that an ambulance had been called. When the ambulance did not come, the family said, a worker at the center called again.
    While there was obviously a problem with the FD response, what the hell was the Dialysis Center staff doing for the pt?
    The pt was still LEGALLY under their care until turned over to the ambulance/fire medics, so they were responsible for her.
    If her condition was deteriorating, I would hope they would have called 911 a little faster than an hour later.
    If they failed to recognize the patient's deteriorating condition, they provided poor care as well.
    If you had a pt that was dying on you, would you wait an hour until recalling 911?
    Sure the response was slow, but something else doesn't sound right about this.
    Why was the ambulance called?
    Was the staff doing anything for the pt?
    There's more to this story, I think...

  6. #31
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    I wouldn't be so quick to judge the crews or the dispatchers. The last time I was in DC, about 3-4 years ago, they were still using an atiquated dispatching system.

    Basically, all stations here all calls all the time. They are not really dispatched, runs were just broadcast one time over a fire radio and you just had to pick up that it was your run on your own.

    Maybe its changed now, but under that kind of system, I am suprised they don't miss runs all the time.
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  7. #32
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    Not for nothing, I would agree it was a failure some where in the system but...... the article has way to many holes to pass any judgement.
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  8. #33
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    Default DCFD Problems

    It seems like every couple of months there is some story that is critical of DCFD. I realize problems and mistakes happen everywhere, but it seems like there is always something wrong at DCFD.

    I'm not trying to slam the members of DCFD, but the organization seems to have management and admin problems. Or perhaps they are an easy target for all the media in the Capital area? Can anyone shed light on their problems?

  9. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by RalphSafety
    management and admin problems.
    I think about sums it up...

  10. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by MemphisE34a
    I wouldn't be so quick to judge the crews or the dispatchers. The last time I was in DC, about 3-4 years ago, they were still using an atiquated dispatching system.

    Basically, all stations here all calls all the time. They are not really dispatched, runs were just broadcast one time over a fire radio and you just had to pick up that it was your run on your own.

    Maybe its changed now, but under that kind of system, I am suprised they don't miss runs all the time.
    In no way is "antiquated" a stong enough word. Thats just nuts. That makes me wonder how many other calls theve missed that just didnt make the news.

    Here we have 30 seconds during the day and 60 seconds at night to go "responding". At that point, if dispatch doesnt recieve confirmation, a cover company is dispatched. Phone calls are then made to the house with the unit that didnt come up on the air. If contact still is not made, the on duty command officer for that area and PD are dispatched to that house to make sure nothing is wrong.

    We are alerted by radio, digital pagers and computer printouts. Ive known of times when one or two of these have failed, but never all three at once.
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    While I'm not going to add to the conjecture surrounding current events, I will say this in defense of the 'antiquated' comment. The District of Columbia's police & fire departments utilize one of the most advanced communications systems in the country. Not only do they operate a dual-band simulcast radio system, but the communications center uses the latest in computer-aided dispatching methods. This includes an AVL system with integrated unit status-messaging, computerized firehouse LED boards, run printouts, automatic trip light and station alerting, verbal response checks, etc. A good percentage of this equipment has been in use since 1999. Oh, by the way- prior to that we were dispatched via a wireline VOCALARM system into the stations. Not by radio.
    Last edited by DCFDCAR5; 04-24-2006 at 08:15 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DCFDCAR5
    While I'm not going to add to the conjecture surrounding current events, I will say this in defense of the 'antiquated' comment. The District of Columbia's police & fire departments utilize one of the most advanced communications systems in the country. Not only do they operate a dual-band simulcast radio system, but the communications center uses the latest in computer-aided dispatching methods. This includes an AVL system with integrated unit status-messaging, computerized firehouse LED boards, run printouts, automatic trip light and station alerting, verbal response checks, etc. A good percentage of this equipment has been in use since 1999. Oh, by the way- prior to that we were dispatched via a wireline VOCALARM system into the stations. Not by radio.
    Just an FYI, your leaving yourself open to get torn apart here. If the DC area uses one of the most advanced systems out there, then how could this have happened?
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    Ok, as a DC fireman I thought I would add just a little to this wild speculation.

    First of all the PIO spoke out of turn. The investigation has just begun and nothing is confirmed, not even the 911 call. We have had a lot of problems with these dialysis centers claming to have called for an ambulance and it turns out to be a private company. Many different things could be going on here and until the full facts are in I wouldn't believe anything in the paper. The speculation that a call was dispatched, not answered with a DEK status and then left hanging on the screen for an hour is very unlikely. If it is true it sounds like the main problem would be in the communications center, which is separate from the fire department.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pfd4life
    Just an FYI, your leaving yourself open to get torn apart here. If the DC area uses one of the most advanced systems out there, then how could this have happened?

    just a fyi, you don't have to be an ignorant know it all in eveyr post doyou?

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    Quote Originally Posted by drnapalm
    Ok, as a DC fireman I thought I would add just a little to this wild speculation.

    First of all the PIO spoke out of turn. The investigation has just begun and nothing is confirmed, not even the 911 call. We have had a lot of problems with these dialysis centers claming to have called for an ambulance and it turns out to be a private company.
    This is what I was hoping. I know that where I work, a private call does not go through the county EMS dispatch, it comes right to our dispatchers office, and it's up to them to decide if it's emergent or not, all depends on the info they get from the call. If they say, "hey this is so and so and we need an ambulance here" 9-10 times without any follow up questions, it's going to be non emergent, and may get pushed back 30-45min due to 911 calls. A few years back there was a big blowout in the city where I work where a competing ambulance company was advertising to call a private service in an emergency, so they could take business away from the fire based paramedic service in that area. Now, obviously DC is different that Milwaukee, but as far as these Dialysis centers go...they are full of people that don't realize the difference between private and fire based services. We are all just "parajamedics"
    Many different things could be going on here and until the full facts are in I wouldn't believe anything in the paper. The speculation that a call was dispatched, not answered with a DEK status and then left hanging on the screen for an hour is very unlikely. If it is true it sounds like the main problem would be in the communications center, which is separate from the fire department.
    As I asked DCFDCAR5, with all of the technology that you have in the dispatching system, it would be very hard to let it happen, but it isn't impossible. It's nice to see that this info about the PT being at the dialysis center has come out. It really sheds light on where the problem may go.

    Sawman, I'm going to ignore your comment on ignorance.....there is a word that begins with H..but I'm not sure what it is.
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    Quote Originally Posted by pfd4life
    Just an FYI, your leaving yourself open to get torn apart here. If the DC area uses one of the most advanced systems out there, then how could this have happened?
    I think this covers my answer: "While I'm not going to add to the conjecture surrounding current events"

    I'm not going to comment on an ongoing investigation, but I will stand by our equipment. Even if it gets me in trouble sometimes. I was only responding to the inaccurate statement about our communications system.
    Last edited by DCFDCAR5; 04-24-2006 at 09:26 PM.

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