RIPLEY - During National Telecommunicators Week (April 13-19), Jackson County Dispatchers are for their hard work and dedication to serving the citizens of Jackson County.

The Jackson County Commission currently employs personnel for the 911 Center. There are eight full-time and four part-time dispatchers. Their work schedule includes a 12-hour shift for 365 days a year.

Jackson County Dispatchers are nationally certified by the Association of Public Safety Communications Officials (APCO), WEAPONS computer through the West Virginia State Police, CPR, HIPPA, and National Incident Management System. Most recently, all Dispatchers received certification in Medical, Fire and Law Enforcement Dispatching through a national organization called PowerPhone. Aside from these certifications, Dispatchers must complete in-service training requirements for Active Shooter classes, Hostage Negotiations, Difficult Callers, Alzheimer’s Disease, Domestic Violence, etc., along with other APCO and PowerPhone classes.

Jackson County 911 dispatchers are responsible for answering four emergency telephone lines, two non-emergency telephone lines and three other phones for business relating to the courthouse and other county departments. From March 1, 2013 to March 31, 2014, Jackson County Dispatch received 48,045 calls on the 911 emergency and non-emergency telephone lines. Jackson County 911 personnel dispatched 15,466 calls.

Multi-tasking is a skill that every Dispatcher must possess. Telephone calls received range for prank calls; animals on the interstate, domestic, fire, bomb threats and health illnesses, and those are just a few examples. While answering these calls, Dispatchers also alert fire, EMS and law enforcement via radio communication systems. While speaking with the caller, Dispatchers are entering information into the Computer Aided Dispatch System (CAD), checking maps, answering the radios, and  monitoring cameras in the courthouse and alarm systems. In addition to these tasks, Dispatchers provide the caller with pre-arrival instructions until EMS or fire personnel, and law enforcement arrive on the scene.

The Jackson County 911 Center dispatches emergency and non-emergency information (calls) to five law enforcement agencies, five volunteer fire departments, emergency management and EMS units.

Jackson County Dispatchers are the unseen heroes when an emergency occurs. Please visit our website at or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.