Charlottesville, VA – The Charlottesville-UVA-Albemarle Emergency Communications Center would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to all of our Public Safety Communications Officers and our partner field responders for their dedicated service during the Christmas holiday.
According to data from the National Fire Protection Association, the winter holiday season is a busy time for fire departments, with peaks or near-peaks in cooking fires, candle fires, and tree and decoration fires. In addition, the holiday season sees an increase in motor vehicle accidents, medical emergencies, and other types of incidents that require the assistance of public safety professionals. This year, our region also experienced unusually cold temperatures and a winter weather front that resulted in a higher volume of 9-1-1 calls.
Between December 23rd and December 26th, our telecommunicators answered a total of 1,933 9-1-1 and administrative telephone calls, and managed a total of 1,766 dispatched police, fire, and EMS incidents, representing a 45% increase in workload compared to the same period last year. Of these calls, 65 were dispatched for incidents such as burst pipes, trees down, and lines down, 46 were dispatched for motor vehicle collisions, and 19 were dispatched for structure fires, chimney fires, and similar emergencies.
Our Public Safety Communications Officers tirelessly answered calls and dispatches around the clock to ensure the safety and well-being of our community, and we are extremely grateful for their hard work and dedication. Their professionalism and commitment to service is truly admirable, and we are proud to have them on our team. We also extend our appreciation to our partner field responders, who worked diligently to handle these emergencies and ensure the safety of our community.
We are honored to have received multiple submissions of positive feedback from members of our community, regarding the professionalism and efficiency of our Public Safety Communications Officers and field responders. One community member, who called on Christmas Day due to a flooded apartment, had this to say about their experience with the region’s public safety system: “The [9-1-1 telecommunicator] was very professional and excellent at listening. The fire department squad were really nice and professional as well. They identified the issue instantly and got it fixed in less than five minutes.” Another caller wrote in, “Everyone was very helpful, and it being Christmas Day, we were happy someone was there to help our mother.” We would like to thank the community for their patience and understanding during times of increased demand, as we continually strive to provide the best possible service to all residents and visitors.
We extend our heartfelt thanks to our Public Safety Communications Officers for their tireless service and their efforts in ensuring a safe and enjoyable holiday season for all. We appreciate the hard work and sacrifices you make to keep us safe; your commitment to serve is truly commendable.