This week honors public safety telecommunicators

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

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