ROCKSPRINGS — No matter the type of emergency or where you are at in Meigs County, you can now dial 9-1-1 to have the necessary first responder sent to your location.
Meigs County EMS and 911 Director Robbie Jacks explained that with the new centralized dispatch, Meigs County 911 dispatchers will handle calls for law enforcement, fire and emergency medical services.
This will allow real time dispatching of all agencies needed, without having to transfer calls between the agencies or make additional calls.
For example, should a call come in of a crash, the dispatcher taking the call could send law enforcement, fire and EMS personnel to the scene.
Commissioner Jimmy Will thanked the voters and residents of Meigs County for making the centralized dispatch possible by passing the 911 levy. The funds from the levy helped to get the county’s 911 system modernized and where it needed to be in order to meet the needs of the county’s residents.
The new standalone 911 agency employees eight full-time dispatchers and two part-time dispatchers. Jacks stated that all previous dispatch employees kept there jobs through the switchover from the two agency dispatching to the centralized agency.
While going through any transition is difficult, and this is no exception, Jacks said that he is proud of the “effort, attitude and adaptability” of the staff who are making the transition possible.
Sheriff Keith Wood noted that while there are still some details and issues to be worked out, particularly with the phone system at the sheriff’s office, the transition is good for the citizens of the county.
Jacks added that the centralized dispatch, and the move of the then-sheriff’s office dispatchers to the Robert E. Byer Emergency Operations Center, is one of the positives to come out of the COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic made the agencies look at different and more efficient ways to handle dispatching, which included the change to all dispatching in one location. Having two dispatchers on shift at all times also allows for 911 to meet state standards, which require two dispatchers at any given time.
For emergency calls in Meigs County dial 9-1-1.
For non-emergency calls, such as following up on a report, calls should go to the respective agency through the phone numbers previously used. For the Meigs County Sheriff’s Office the number is 740-992-3371 and for Pomeroy Police Department the number is 740-992-6411. Both agencies will have an automated system from which the caller can select the needed option.
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Sarah Hawley is the managing editor of The Daily Sentinel.