Chicago OEMC

Massive New $75M Upgrade Planned For Chicago's 911 Center

The new high-tech system will accept texts and photos during emergency situations

Smartphone calling 911

Thanks to new high-tech upgrades, soon it will be easier for people to report emergencies in Chicago.

The city's Office of Emergency Management and Communications will pay $75 million dollars to upgrade it's 911 center.

"It is critical that we provide our first responders with the right tools to ensure the safety of our residents and visitors,” OEMC Executive Director Rich Guidice said in a press release.

The new system will accept texts, photos and videos and it and it will be able to automatically pinpoint a cell phone caller's location, according to the press release. That same technology will be able to find the nearest first responder.

Nbc 5 Investigates recently uncovered problems with 9-1-1 dispatchers being able to locate callers, and the new system will help to address that issue.

The city's current 911 system is almost 25 years old making it important to upgrade considering most calls come from cell phones. The new system will be able to handle all digital inputs.

Both Police and Fire Dispatch Operations in the city will have access to the same information in "real time."

"Each and every day, our police officers work side-by-side with Chicago's firefighters, paramedics and first responders to keep our residents safe," said CPD Interim Superintendent Charlie Beck. "With this state-of-the-art emergency dispatch system, we are building a more effective, collaborative and integrated public safety system to better protect Chicago."

The transition to the new 911 center will take 3 years the department said.

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