Emergency Management Works to Speed Up Response Time

The Grand Island-Hall County Emergency Management Department has released its annual report. And according to that report, the department received 46,968 9-1-1 calls in 2012.

To keep up with that large number of calls, the department is moving forward with the ‘Quality Assurance Program.'

Jon Rosenlund, director of Emergency Management, said, "Instead of taking 90 or 110 seconds we want to cut that down to 70 to 80 seconds. Every second counts in an emergency and the sooner we can ascertain where that call is located and who needs to go we want to get those units going as soon as possible."

According to the report, they've cut down nearly 20 seconds in some calls, but Rosenlund says technology continues to create a challenge. He said as long as the caller knows their location the response will be quick, however cell phones have made it more difficult.

Rosenlund said dropped calls happen a lot with cell phones. "Technology has made it more complicated; it's given us more information but also more things to do."

He added, "Getting your street address off of a land line is simple quick and easy. Locating your wireless call takes extra time and often that location isn't transmitted for some reason."

With more wireless use also comes more social media use and the Grand Island-Hall County Emergency Management department has increased its online presence in the last year.

Officials said "hash-tags" on Twitter helped saved many lives and get information to the public in other parts of the county, so they'll continue to make use of social media.

The department has installed a new 9-1-1- phone system and changed over its radio system format in the last year. For more details, log on to