Klamath Falls, Ore. – If you’ve ever had to report an emergency, your first contact was likely with a 911 dispatcher.
Klamath County 911 Director Keith Endacott began his work as a 911 dispatcher nearly 20 years ago. “A friend of mine knew me as a pizza shop manager, and thought I might multi-task okay,” Endacott said. “And here I am.”
911 services went online in Klamath Falls in 1989.
Endacott said it takes a special set of skills to be a dispatcher. “It’s really multitasking in the moment, as opposed to ‘today I have so many tasks, by the end of the day, I’ll finish them’ – Multi-tasking for a dispatcher is you have 4 tasks, and 2 seconds to get them all done.”
The stress of the job can be difficult, leading to something they call “dispatch fatigue.”
“You develop coping skills, and you understand how to deal with difficult calls,” Endacott explained. “The other dispatchers are a great support network.”
National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week continues through Sunday.
Klamath County 911 currently has 4 positions open.
You can learn more at Klamath911.com
KOTI-TV NBC2 reporter Lyle Ahrens moved from Nebraska to Klamath Falls in the late 1970’s. He instantly fell in love with the mountains, the trees and the rivers, and never once regretted the move.Lyle’s job history is quite colorful.
He’s managed a pizza parlor; he’s been a bartender, and a “kiwifruit grader” at an organic orchard in New Zealand. A Klamath Falls radio station hired Lyle in the mid 90’s as a news writer and commercial producer. In 2004, Lyle joined the KOTI/KOBI news operation.Lyle notes with pride that he has a big responsibility presenting the Klamath Basin to a wide and varied audience.
“The on-going water crisis has underscored the fact that the people and the issues in the Klamath Basin are every bit as diverse as the terrain. Winning and keeping the trust of the viewers, as well as the newsmakers, is something I strive for with each story”.
When he’s not busy reporting the news, Lyle enjoys astronomy, playing guitar, fixing old radios and listening to anything by Sheryl Crow.