San Diego's Fire/EMS Dispatch Center handles more than 130,000 emergency calls annually.
In addition to emergency calls, EMS/fire dispatchers handle thousands of other calls and requests for services such as fire lane violations, fire hazard concerns, fire alarm testing notifications, etc. They also answer routine administrative calls from allied agencies, citizens, and city personnel.
Dispatchers work either 10 or 12 hour shifts. The Command Battalion Chief is assigned to supervise daily operations and works a 10 hour shift.
Your 9-1-1 call is the ECDC's top priority!
While the 911 dispatcher confirms the caller's location, the Automatic Number Identification (ANI)/ALI information is automatically downloaded into the CAD system. The entire process of call-receiving, dispatching, and emergency resource monitoring is accomplished through CAD.
Click here to see a display of the current incidents dispatched by San Diego Fire-Rescue.
All Fire Dispatchers are certified as Emergency Medical Dispatchers (EMDs) and use a nationally recognized protocol called Medical Priorities Dispatch System (MPDS) which is integrated into the CAD system. MPDS includes Chief Complaint/incident type protocols which help EMDs quickly obtain vital information about patient status and scene conditions. The EMD then uses this information to send the appropriate response configuration as determined by local medical and EMS control. The MPDS also includes Dispatch Life Support (DLS) treatment sequence protocols covering arrest, choking, and childbirth. These protocols enable a trained and certified EMD to assist the caller in immediately helping the patient.
The MPDS protocols ensure that trained and certified EMDs properly carry out the following four important activities: