May 2, 2017

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Complacency Kills: Officer Safety for Dispatchers

Gordon Graham
Category: Public Safety, Law Enforcement

Gordon Graham here with Today’s Tip from Lexipol. And Today’s Tip deals with a topic we’ve talked about before but with a new twist.

Complacency kills applies also to our telecommunicator friends out there.

One of the core tenets of Below 100 is “Remember, Complacency Kills.” And the twist is, this doesn’t just apply to you troopers, officers and deputies in the field. Complacency kills applies also to our telecommunicator friends out there.  Our TCs. 

You are working the Communications Center and that silent burglary alarm that has gone off a thousand times before goes off again. Complacency Kills. The call should still be dispatched as if it were a burglary in progress. It should be sent out promptly and with a sufficient number of units to handle the call.  Officer Smith or Deputy Jones makes a pedestrian stop at the intersection where she’s made hundreds of prior contacts. All of them were handled with no problem. Complacency Kills. Send her sufficient backup.  

This holds true for our fire service TCs, too. You get the call from the elderly lady reporting seeing and smelling smoke. She’s called dozens of times before. Same complaint. The response has never resulted in finding a fire or smoke. Complacency Kills. Don’t just send a single engine; follow protocol and sent the suggested full response.  

It is easy to fall into the trap of complacency.  But I’ll say it again. Complacency Kills. 

And that is Today’s Tip from Lexipol. Gordon Graham signing off. 

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