Local Man Questions 911 Response Times

Reported by: Deanne Coffin
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Updated: 8/14 9:36 pm
 On August 12th, Roger Johnston called 911 to come help his brother who was in distress.

"He was losing his breath and I started talking to the lady and she started asking me if he was breathing.  What is your address, your phone number, what's going on and this and then he started going out so I had to put the phone down and I was helping my brother and had to re-call and I re-called and they arrived about 15 to 20 minutes later,” says Roger Johnston, 911 caller.

Johnston says the time that elapsed between the original 911 call and the time that the emergency crew showed up on the scene, he feels was a factor in the recovery of his brother.

"But it went too far.  Too much time had lapsed in between and the end result is when my brother was in the hospital, and I am sitting at home.  I have to do all the work, you know the CPR and everything,” added Johnston.

Lt. Manning with the Pocatello Police Department disputes that time period.

"We tried to explain to him that and he will find out it wasn't 20 minutes,” says Lt. Paul Manning, Pocatello Police.

Lt. Manning said most dispatch calls have a processing time of two minutes from start to finish to get the proper information from the caller.

"Then the response time from the time that the police or fire get the dispatch, it just depends on where they are in reference to where the call is.  If the nearest ambulance is already on a call, they have to send an ambulance from another station, so it may take a little bit longer,” says Lt. Manning.

Roger says he's not angry at dispatch or first responders,  he just thinks there needs to be a change in protocol.

Mr. Johnston’s brother remains in stable condition in Portneuf Medical Center.

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