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SARATOGA SPRINGS: Call center debuts new digs

"Now one person handles it; they only have to answer one set of questions," Undersheriff Michael Woodcock said. "There is more continuity."

When a 9-1-1 call comes in, explained Gordon, the caller's address comes up on one screen. On another, it shows which police agency, ambulance corps and fire department serves that area. A third screen displays a map of the area the call was made from.

"The mapping plays a big part for " I would say " 70 percent of our calls," said Gordon. "Especially with Saratoga Springs in the summertime " with the influx of people from out of the area, the mapping will be extremely helpful."

Gordon also said the mapping assists with emergency services personnel who, though they service Saratoga County, are often hired from outside of the county.

The shift supervisor also monitors a program called Locater. Locater is a Web-based poster-creation program that provides law enforcement agencies with access to create and distribute their own posters to include missing children, missing adults, AMBER Alert, wanted, crime alert, and other additional titles. The program allows agencies to distribute posters electronically and transmit the information to other agencies, media outlets, and the general public via e-mail distribution.

The same with general information. The way the system is now, a shift supervisor has the option of communicating with other agencies and the public via phone, radio or e-mail.

"Basically, we have a three-fold system as to how fast and how far you want to disseminate information," said Gordon.

Bowen said it will take until at least June for all cellular emergency 9-1-1 calls in the county, even those made in places like Saratoga Springs that have their own dispatchers, to get forwarded to the county.

"The number of landline calls is going down," Bowen said. "Everything is going wireless, and people are dumping their regular phone."

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