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At Chagrin Valley Dispatch, a Cleveland-area emergency dispatch center, staffers buckle up and brace for every kind of emergency call during a shift.
In a recent episode of “911 Crisis Center,” a documentary series airing on Oxygen, multiple calls for help came in following a serious car accident.
“It’s one car with three people in it,” a caller said. “There’s a lot of blood!” Another caller said that the car had hit a pole and that the vehicle “split in half.”
Dispatchers assured callers that medical and police help was on the way, while colleagues kept EMS and police updated with information as it came in bit-by-bit.
They learned that airbags had deployed and that three males were inside the car — two of the men inside the vehicle were pronounced dead at the scene. The other was airlifted to a hospital. The police are investigating what appears to have been a drag racing accident.
For dispatcher Donna Majoros, a call from a woman whose husband collapsed and struggled for breath as she and her daughter were taking him to the hospital struck close to home. Her mother had gone to the hospital because of a similar emergency and never came back.
“‘I can’t breathe calls’ take me right back there,” she admitted. Majoros collected herself and focused on guiding the caller in giving life-saving CPR.
Majoros instructed the woman to lay her husband face-up on the ground and to kneel by his side. Calmly, she told the woman to place the heel of one hand on the man’s chest between his nipples and then to place the other hand on top of the first.
Press down firmly about two inches, she instructed. “We’re gonna go 30 times.”
“The only thing I was thinking is that there's no way this guy is going to die,” the dispatcher said.
Paramedics soon arrived and took over the CPR. The husband was taken to the hospital for treatment, and he survived, thanks to CPR at the scene, according to “911 Crisis Center.”
In another call, dispatchers handled an incident involving shots fired that snowballed into a home invasion.
“You have all these scattered pieces,” said dispatcher Charline Polk. “This victim gets carjacked, he gets shot, and the same suspects who shot him kick in his door at his home ... Our job as dispatchers is to get information until we piece the whole puzzle together. Once we did that everything else was left up to the officers."
The victim was taken to the hospital for two gunshot wounds. The vehicle involved and was later found torched in Cleveland. The four suspects were still at large and the shooting victim’s wife and baby were unharmed.
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