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National telecommunicators week celebrates emergency dispatchers

IDAHO FALLS, Idaho (KIFI) - Emergency dispatchers are the people you talk to when help is needed most.

And they're getting the recognition they deserve, thanks to national telecommunications week.

DeLisa Orren is a regional communications supervisor with the Idaho State Police and says the recognition is nice.

"You see the black and white patrol car, but you don't think all that goes on behind the scenes that happens to it," Orren said "If a dispatcher is doing a good job, you don't even think about them. They answer the phone, get the information, and don't think twice about them ever again."

The 23-year dispatch veteran says it's a hard job.

"As long as we have something we are doing and proactive, that part seems to go pretty smooth," Orren said "When it gets rough is when we're waiting to see what happened or when we sent everyone that we can send and they're still not there yet and we know that people are in trouble and need help, those are hard moments."

Talking with upset family members is also hard, but to say it's rewarding is an understatement.

"There are so many moments that make it worth it," Orren said "You do make a difference. You go into work and regardless of how you're feeling, you go into a place where you are making a difference. You're able to help. What you do and what you say matters. It helps other people. By being proficient at our jobs, we save lives."

For example, a 911 dispatcher in Bingham County is getting recognized by the sheriff for saving a life, after she calmly helped a caller perform CPR.

Orren also credits the troopers with ISP and all the agencies they work with, saying they're second to none.

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Rachel Fabbi

Rachel Fabbi is a reporter, anchor and producer for Local News 8 and Eyewitness News 3.

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