Marion County Emergency Responders Have First Working Group Meet - Clarksburg, Morgantown: News, Sports, Weather

Marion County Emergency Responders Have First Working Group Meeting

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The Marion County 911 Center has until December 31 to get all of the first responders on the same page. Thursday it took the first step in that direction.

"We are going to start developing protocols and different procedures we need to come into place during a disaster and even on a normal basis," said Deputy 911 Director Chris McIntire. "How to operate your radio, we are going to promote training, develop the training here, and come up with new policies and procedures for everybody to follow."

The Fairmont Police, Farmington Fire Department, and County Commissioner Guy Ward attended the first working group meeting.

McIntire laid out ten steps he felt would get everyone on the same page in case of an emergency.

This includes back up procedures, new products, training for disasters, and better overall communication.

"We got one of the best 911 centers in the state of West Virginia," said Marion County Commissioner Guy Ward. "State of the art. We got some of the best volunteer fire departments with some of the best equipment. If they cant communicate what good is it? This is to solve the issues we have, bring everyone together, and do a better job for the community."

McIntire took the group on a tour of the facility and to the four tower sites to show it the amount of backup the center has and to teach it about the equipment.

He said it is very important that the group gets the ten points accomplished before December 31 when the radios change to a Narrowband Frequency.

"It will lower the modulation rate and the departments will have a little bit more problems talking on their old systems," McIntire said. "So we want to get them migrated to the new system or get some fail safes in place so when they go out and try to talk December 31st they aren't plagued with issues."

McIntire said he would like the group to meet once a week for at least an hour. That way they can work on the areas they need to improve on.