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Why was a Butler 911 Dispatcher Supervisor fired recently?

Butler County 911

This post is being written by Butler Dispatch LLC, and not an individual. This post also falls under “Freedom of Speech” and “Freedom of Press”, cease and desist letters will not be answered as this is an anonymous editorial, and journalists have a right to protect who submitted the story. This story will also contain opinion-based content by the submitter.


The 911 Center

For those who are unaware where the Butler County 911 Center is located at, it is right next to the Sunni view Nursing Complex. If you are near the hospital, look south (left of the courthouse). There are a large water tower and a large radio tower next to one another at the complex. That is where the center is, or you can just freely Google it.

Now, let’s get into the nitty-gritty since we just identified what we are talking about. The 911 center was just “recently” built when Butler County switched from the low-band radio system, to the current 470-MHz UHF system. New consoles were purchased, and a whole new building was made. But, we will not describe all of the issues going on up there in depth, as that is time for a another article in the future.

A reported supervisor at the Butler County 911 Center was allegedly fired after he wrote a letter to the Butler County Commissioners discussing the current issues at the center (how the 911 system operates and the employees). Apparently, someone higher-up on the food chain didn’t like it that he made 911 look bad, so they terminated his employment.

The horrible radio network, nope?

One of the issues discussed was the horrible radio network. Just a few excerpts:

KDKA/CBS Local – http://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2015/10/27/911-system-outage-affects-4-western-pennsylvania-counties/

Trib Live – http://triblive.com/news/butler/7515830-74/county-emergency-911

Let’s explain this in a very general definition. The radio system is old, it’s built on old technology. There are numerous towers throughout Butler County that is interconnected by a backup microwave plan and various other ways. The dispatch frequency is transmitted out all towers at the same time. The way the dispatch antennas work is they are like your old TV antennas, yagis. They point in the direction they want to talk to. Well, yearly these antennas drift away, causing a horrendous issue where pagers may or may not work. This was supposed to be fixed by adding a GPS-dongle to help automate the drift, but they do not work as they should.

In addition, Butler County uses a “radio identifier” program. Each radio authorized by 911 has a 4-digit ID, and when that radio transmits to the center, it pops up with that radio ID and “who” is talking.

The Staff

The staff at the Butler County 911 Center is more than unkind, and that is truthful. Whether it’s Joey Smith calling because her kid is locked inside of her car, or Deputy Fire Chief Smith saying there is a 4-car crash with heavy entrapment, the 911 center DOES NOT care who you are or what position you hold. They only care about where the emergency is, what happened, and trying to provide help if needed. Unlike other counties that are show personal affection to the person calling, the staff at our 911 center get’s rather cocky and snitty when you call in. No matter what it is. Not to mention the random hang-ups instead of staying on the line with the caller….

When you call 911 at night time, you may get a rather arrogant dispatcher because you woke them from their nap time. ON THE CLOCK. The supervisor fired “Brian D.” has reportedly stated in his letter to the commissioners that the dispatchers have been caught “sleeping” on the job. It’s not illegal to sleep on the job according to other staff at 911, but, it is allowed. It is frowned upon, but it’s allowed.

Did you know supposedly all of the memory and typing tests that were required 4-6 years ago is now gone? Yep, there are NO requirements supposedly to become a 911 dispatcher, other than “prior 911 experience”. 911 fired a new-hire in 2017 because the woman identified as having experience when that experience was being a member of a ladies-auxiliary in a fire department.

A Letter

A letter can go far in today’s world. Once it is in writing on paper, that is an accusation/allegation. And an investigation needs to be handled. Apparently, when certain agencies get investigated it causes a panic or uproar that needs to be tamed. Our question is why did the 911 center fire a supervisor reportedly for stating his opinion. If the center is working “to spec” and doing everything correctly, they shouldn’t have to fire someone for reporting what they saw, correct?

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