INDEPENDENT NEWS

More Calls, Faster Service

Published: Sun 10 Dec 2006 12:46 AM
More Calls, Faster Service
New Zealand Police National News Release
11:21am 10 December 2006
http://www.police.govt.nz/news/release.html?id=2776
The focus of considerable criticism just 18 months ago, the Northern Police Communications Centre is now answering more emergency calls more quickly than at any time since detailed records began.
"Providing a faster service even though we're getting more calls represents a marked improvement in our performance and a gain for public safety," said North Comms Centre Manager Superintendent Allan Boreham.
The world standard is that 90% of emergency calls should be answered within 10 seconds. This is known as the 'service level'.
"Last week, our service level for 111 calls hit 97% for the second time this year - our best results yet. Compare that to our worst week in February 2005 when we were at 52%, and you can see how far we've come."
Annual figures also tell a positive story. In 2001 North Comms took 250,167 emergency calls and by 2005 this had climbed to a total of 376,899 - an increase of nearly 127,000. Anecdotally, Police attribute the rise to population growth and the proliferation of mobile phones.
Over this time the percentage of emergency calls answered in North Comms within 10 seconds has varied from between 74% and 87%. Call volume for 2006 is likely to be even higher but despite this, the current service level is the best yet at 91%.
The North Comms results have been praised by the man who chaired the independent panel that reviewed the Police Communications Centres in 2004 and 2005.
In New Zealand recently to see improvements to the centres made since the review, Chief Superintendent Mick Corboy of New South Wales Police, said he was impressed with progress.
"The time it was taking to answer 111 calls was a real concern when the panel conducted its review. New Zealand is reaching the 90% world standard service level all the time now, and I'm very pleased. North Comms in particular has come a long way," Mr Corboy said.
Mr Boreham said he was immensely proud of the efforts of his staff since the review.
"They've worked through some tough times to deliver great results.
"We'll continue to strive to offer a better service to the community as part of the police response team," he said.
ENDS

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