Dozens of 911 center complaints filed by N.C. fire, EMS revealed

Allegations of delays, wrong addresses and and wrong responses make up the 55 complains submitted by the Durham Fire Department and EMS about the city’s 911 center

By Rachel Engel

DURHAM, N.C. — Dozens of complaints by public safety agencies against Durham’s 911 center were revealed in a recent public records request.

A months-long investigation by CBS 17 revealed the depth of the emergency call center’s staffing shortages, which revealed nearly 60 complaints by the Durham Fire Department and EMS. The grievances included delays, wrong addresses, wrong responses, and confrontations by residents who stopped by the fire station after they were unable to reach 911.

In a statement, the city acknowledged the missteps, and laid out its plan for addressing them.

“While the DECC is not where it needs to be, its management is taking urgent and appropriate steps,” the statement read.

According to CBS 17, the city says they have hired nine people in recent weeks – two of whom are trainers. In addition, the city has cut the required training from 12 to eight weeks, has reviewed the workplace culture and is now offering sign-on bonuses.

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