911 What's Your Emergency?

Story by Thomas Moore on 08/09/2018
Dispatchers at DES make sure emergency services get where they are needed promptly by answering phones and monitoring systems to help keep everyone safe.
Lawrence Modjeska, a public safety dispatcher receives all kinds of calls, from the ordinary to the extraordinary.
"We take all of the routine calls that would come in for police, fire, [general] questions, and all of the emergency calls coming in whether it was a traffic accident, injury, hazardous condition, light pole down, hazmat spill, we get all of those calls."
The biggest challenge Modjeska faces are emergency calls from the Red Cross when there is a family emergency for a specific soldier who is temporarily training at Fort McCoy.
"Typically Red Cross will call here, saying they have an emergency message for a soldier somewhere on Fort McCoy. We have to do all the research to try and find [that] soldier. Sometimes we strike it easy and we can get the message to them in minutes," Modjeska said.
"But there are times it has taken hours of research trying to track a person down," he continued. "If we had a constantly updated list of people that are training here and where, so that we could contact them," would make Modjeska's job a lot easier.
Modjeska understands that training is the most important focus for the various military personnel that are here.
"If something comes up regardless of whether it is an emergency, or a rather routine damage to a government vehicle, we are going to get people on it to get it taken care of so they can continue their training because that is what they are here for."
If you call 9-1-1 on Fort McCoy you might get to talk to Modjeska.
"9-1-1 what's your emergency."

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