The Department of Public Safety also operates an Emergency Management division, which oversees preparedness, response, and recovery operations in Erie County.
The Emergency Management division prepares for all manner of emergencies, including weather-related incidents; hazardous materials spills; or terrorism or security situations.
Part of the Emergency Management operations includes educating the public about how they should prepare for emergencies in their own homes. For example, citizens should prepare disaster or emergency supply kits for their homes and vehicles, and they should make plans for family members with disabilities in the event of an emergency.
Public Safety’s Emergency Management division also oversees operations involving specialized Erie County volunteer groups, including the Hazardous Materials Response Team, the Community Emergency Response Team and the Animal Response Team.
Did you know? Hundreds of volunteers are part of the specialized volunteer groups that work with Public Safety’s Emergency Management division.
The Erie County Department of Public Safety provides both 911 services and emergency management services for the county.
Director John Grappy and his team aim to keep all citizens and visitors to Erie County safe by planning for emergency situations, training staff and citizens to respond swiftly and effectively to incidents, and by providing comprehensive dispatch services.
The department, which operates as part of the county executive’s administration and is overseen by the director of administration, includes a division for the 911 Center and a division for Emergency Management.
The 911 Center, which operates 24/7 out of the Public Safety headquarters in Summit Township, employs 46 full-time telecommunicators and three full-time shift supervisors.
The telecommunicators are highly trained, having received 14 weeks of training – including national certifications – before working on their own.
The center provides dispatch services for eight law enforcement agencies and 32 fire and EMS agencies.
In 2016, the 911 Center provided answered 167,403 calls, or an average of 459 per day.
In addition to taking calls from citizens and dispatching first responders, the 911 Center aims to educate the public about when to call 911 and what to expect in the call.
Did you know? This week, April 9-15, is National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week.