April 14 – 20, 2013
Amarillo, TX – The Amarillo Emergency Communication Center (AECC) is celebrating National Public Safety Telecommunications Week (NPSTW) this week, which is sponsored by the Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials (APCO) International. This week is celebrated annually and honors the thousands of men and women who respond to emergency calls, dispatch emergency professionals and equipment, and render life-saving assistance to the world’s citizens. That’s why the theme for this year’s activities is “Dispatch from Around the World.”
“Our dispatchers are behind the scenes supporting the police, fire and emergency medical personnel who make actual physical contact with the people we interact with only through the phone,” says Lou Ann Humphrey, the Amarillo Emergency Communication Center shift supervisor leading this week’s activities. “The importance of recognizing and celebrating the hard work of these dedicated professionals at every level is immeasurable.”
The AECC kicked off this year’s activities with a family picnic Sunday at Thompson Park. On Tuesday, April 16, the mayor and commissioner will issue a proclamation recognizing NPSTW during their regular City Commission meeting at 3 p.m.
On Wednesday, April 17, the AECC will host its annual awards ceremony at 7:30 p.m. in the Grand Plaza at the Amarillo Civic Center. The media is invited to attend. Awards and recognitions will include the Citizen Hero Award, Telecommunicator of the Year and Supervisor of the Year.
The AECC began operations on October 27, 2009 when the City of Amarillo and Northwest Texas Hospital consolidated all dispatch functions for police, fire, animal control and emergency medical services and merged into one unified communication center. AECC is the Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) for the City of Amarillo, which means that all 911 calls originating inside the city are answered at the AECC. In fact, 548,489 calls were answered by the AECC in 2012, alone.