The Duncan Banner

October 25, 2013

Suson discusses 911 county mapping at LEPC

Derrick Miller
The Duncan Banner

DUNCAN — Stephens County 911 dispatching is handling a variety of calls. The only thing missing is the mapping of each location.

During the Local Emergency Planning Commission (LEPC) meeting Thursday, Mark Suson, Stephens County 911 director, discussed the mapping process and why it may be the summer of 2014 before mapping is completed.

“Everything’s working normally except for the map,” Suson said.

He said several things are supposed to pop up on a dispatcher’s screen when a 911 call is received. These include basic information from name, phone number, address and GPS location.

Suson said the address and GPS location aren’t showing up because mapping hasn’t been completed. He said the mapping company should be making its way throughout the rural county to touch base with homeowners to help establish permanent addresses.

“These will be permanent addresses,” Suson said. “To be a permanent address, it has to have the GPS coordinates attached.”

Although permanent addresses may be assigned to homeowners throughout the county, Suson said those addresses can’t be used until the United States Postal Service touches base with each residence owner.

He said data and addresses collected by the mapping companies will be shared with the post office and telecommunication centers to aid in the mapping project. From there, it will be up to those entities to access the permanent addresses.

Suson said all permanent addresses for rural county homes should be collected by February.

“It probably won’t go into effect until summer,” he said. “The post office is short-handed because of budget cuts.”

Aside from mapping and establishing permanent addresses, Suson said there are other things coming for the county 911 service. Among them will be the ability to text an emergency to 911 by the end of 2014.

“Because of the systems we use, we will not be paying large fees for upgrades,” Suson said.