The Los Angeles Fire Department’s crucial notification systems have left some in need waiting as glitches, malfunctions, and missed communications leave emergency personnel either confused or uninformed.
The failures, discovered by the Los Angeles Times, came after it was published that LAFD officials have been using formulas to calculate response times that showed first responders arriving on scene faster than they really were. The two revelations have lead the Fire Commission to hire technical experts to investigate the malfunctions and Mayor Villaraigosa to launch an investigation.
Meanwhile, officials claim that the city is still safe. However, there were two cases on March 2 when the system failed and emergency calls were missed. The system handled 1,000 calls on a back up plan that day. Neither missed call resulted in a fatality. However, confusion on one call highlighted in the Times left a woman with a mangled hand waiting 45 minutes for paramedics.
From the Los Angeles Times:
When the machine swallowed her hand, slicing off one finger and mangling the rest, Tania Wafer’s co-workers tried frantically to stop the bleeding as a supervisor dialed 911.
Hang on, they told her as she slid in and out of consciousness on the floor of the printing plant. The ambulance will come soon.
Read the full article here.