City and Borough of Juneau
155 S. Seward Street
Juneau, Alaska 99801
tel. 907-586-5240
fax 907-586-5385

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Questions Posted to "Ask a Dispatcher"

Q. what question do u ask when someone calls with an emergency

Dear Juneau Resident,

That is a simple question and the answer can be long and complicated, with books written about just that issue. In summary, the first information a dispatcher wants to know is the location of the emergency. If a dispatcher were to get only one question answered that would be the one.

The emergency may be medical in nature which kicks in a list of standard protocols and decision trees (if this is happening, ask/instruct this...). If the emergency is a violent disturbance there would be questions about weapons, descriptions/names of people involved, specific actions of those people. A motor vehicle collision would have different questions.

While the questions are being asked in any of these situations, the questioning dispatcher or another dispatcher may be sending fire or police resources to the emergency. The dispatcher will often seek information right up until the responders arrive at the scene. Responders are often updated about a call, sometimes multiple times, while driving to the emergency.

If you have questions about a specific call that involved you or someone you know, you can call JPD and speak with a dispatch supervisor. As long as legally required confidentiality can be preserved, the supervisor can go over the call with you and explain why certain questions were asked.


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