BANGOR, Maine (NEWS CENTER) – This week is the chance to recognize dispatchers—the men and women all over the state and the country who work around the clock to answer emergency calls.
It is called National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week (NPSTW).
“911. What's the address of your emergency?" Will Lovejoy said as he answered a call at the Penobscot Regional Communications Center.
Lovejoy said he never knows what to expect on the other end of the line, but he is prepared for anything as calls come in from all over the northern part of the state
Some situations are quite literally life threatening.
"Everything we do day in and day out goes into the system,” Lovejoy said.
Using state-of-the-art technology, he is able to pinpoint locations and guide callers through specific questions.
He carefully navigates through several different computer programs across an array of screens with ease.
"If they don't want to admit it, it's up to them,” he said. “But I'm a geek. I love computers."
Seven years into the job, he said he has learned first-hand how critical the technology is.
"That's the one thing I always tell people: Leave your location on your phone," Lovejoy said.
He is able to see most cell phone calls directly on his screen.
The Penobscot County Regional Communications Center alone received more than 42,000 911 calls in 2016.
For Will, a volunteer firefighter, he has experienced the other side of those calls.
"It adds to knowing the county itself. But it also adds to the unpredictability of calls,” he said.
But it is that unpredictability, that he said makes his job so rewarding.
"All in a day's work,” Lovejoy said. "It's just fun. It's a fun job."
National Telecommunicators Week is a nationwide recognition from April 9th-15th.
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