Evansville Dispatch is the public safety answering point (PSAP) for all of Evansville and Vanderburgh County. In addition to handling those 9-1-1 calls, Central Dispatch also provides radio communications for local police, sheriff and fire departments.
There are many reasons a person may need to contact Central Dispatch via 9-1-1. Those include:
In contrast, there are times when a person should not call 9-1-1. Those include:
Sometimes, a person may call 9-1-1 by mistake. If that happens, stay on the line and inform dispatch of the mistake. A police car will continue to your location until dispatch can confirm there is no emergency.
If you have a cell phone, check your manual to determine how to lock your phone pad. This can help prevent false 9-1-1 calls being made.
When teaching a child how to call 9-1-1, instruct them to dial nine-one-one, not nine-eleven. There is no 11 button on the keypad, and this may create confusion.
Be prepared to answer a variety of questions from the 9-1-1 operators. These questions are necessary and do not delay the emergency personnel from being sent. The questions you may be asked to answer include:
For non-English speaking residents, there is a translation service available. The “Language Line” is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The service involves a short pause before the 9-1-1 operator is connected with an interpreter. Via a conference call, the interpreter and 9-1-1 operators work together to communicate the caller’s emergency. The service handles over 170 different languages, and in most cases can connect the 9-1-1 operator with a translator in a matter of seconds. If the 9-1-1 operator is unsure of the caller’s nationality, they can request help from the Language Line service, and a representative there will assist in the language identification.
A bicycle is more than a means of basic transportation. Riding can be fun, exciting, and a great way to exercise. Remember though, when you ride, you’re not alone! You share the road with cars, trucks, pedestrians, and other cyclists. Accidents are the quickest way to turn a bicycle adventure into a bicycling tragedy. Here are some tips to help make your ride a safe and enjoyable one.
Protect Your Head – Wear a Helmet
Wear a helmet! Studies have shown that using a bicycle helmet can reduce the chance of head injuries by up to 85%. Select a helmet that has a snug, but comfortable fit. Look for the helmet labels that show they are recommended by either the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) or the Snell Memorial Foundation.
See and Be Seen – Wear proper clothing
Wear proper clothing for riding. Clothing should be light in color so you are easily visible to others around you and close fitting to avoid being caught in the bicycle’s moving parts. Also, be sure that books and other loose items are secured to the bike or are carried in a back pack.
The Safe Way is the Right Way
Go with the flow of traffic; ride on the right side of the road. You must obey the rules of the road when you ride. This includes traffic signs, signals, and road markings. The safe way to ride is single file. Don’t weave from lane to lane or tailgate to hitch rides on moving vehicles. Learn and use proper hand signals.
Look ALL Ways
Be aware of traffic around you. 7 out of 10 car-bicycle crashes occur at driveways or other intersections. Check for traffic—always look left-right-left. Walk your bicycle across busy streets at corners; use crosswalks when possible.
Keep alert for obstacles in your path. Watch out for potholes, sewer gratings, cracks, railroad tracks, loose gravel, and broken glass. Before going around an object, look ahead and behind you for a gap in traffic. Plan your move, and signal your intentions. Be especially careful in wet weather; water can make you slide and make your brakes work improperly.
Beware of the Dark Side
Be cautious when biking at night. If you have to ride at night, display front and rear reflectors on your bicycle. Wear light colored clothing and reflective markings or materials, especially on your ankles, wrists, back, and helmet. Ride in areas that are familiar and on streets that are brightly lighted.
Follow designated bike routes where available. Bicycles routes are marked by special signs or lines, and are reserved for cyclists. Become familiar with such places in your area. Don’t forget, courtesy rules for the road apply to bike paths too!
Fix It Up
Make sure your bicycle is adjusted properly for you. Before using your bike, check to make sure that all parts are secured and working. The handlebars should be firmly in place and turn easily; the wheels should be straight and secured. You should always check all parts of your bicycle after a fall or after transporting it. Make sure the tires are properly inflated.
Check your brakes before riding. To maintain control apply the rear brake slightly before applying the front brake, Remember to ride slowly in wet weather; roadways may be slippery and your brakes will have less friction to stop the bicycle. It’s important to apply brakes earlier in wet weather since it takes more distance to stop.
Protect your bicycle from theft. A bicycle can be stolen from just about any place at any time. But simple precautions can deter would-be bike thieves. One thing that most stolen bikes have in common is that they were not secured by a lock to a fixed object. Always lock your bicycle securely, whether you’re gone for a few minutes or a few hours. Use a U-lock, securing both wheels and the frame to a stationary object such as a post, fence, tree, or bike rack. For extra security, add a chain or cable with a good padlock. Record the serial number of your bicycle and keep it with the sales receipt and a photograph of the bike. Mark your bicycle with an engraver to deter thieves and to help the police in identifying and returning a stolen bike to the rightful owner. Use a unique number such as your social security number or driver’s license number.
One of the most critical times of day involving the safety of our children is getting on and off the school bus. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 33 school-age children die in school bus-related accidents each year. Most of these are pedestrians who are hit at the bus stop by a passing car or the bus itself.
Not only do parents and children need to be cautious of traffic; this is a key time for predators to target children as well. Indecent exposures and suspicious adult runs are becoming more common. The Evansville Police Department has a few tips to keep our children safe from the time they leave for the bus stop until they arrive home safely at the end of the school day.
By educating our children on bus stop safety, we can help them avoid becoming another statistic. Parents and children can both play a role to keep the bus stop a safe place for children to start and end their school day.
In Southern Indiana, winter weather can change in the blink of an eye. Your driving behavior should change as well so you can avoid being in or causing a traffic accident. Here are a few tips that should get you through the winter driving season safely.
BEFORE YOU TRAVEL
WHILE ON THE ROAD
Halloween can be an enjoyable holiday for children and parents alike. Unfortunately, it can also be a very dangerous time filled with accidents and criminal acts. The following safety tips can help to insure that you and your family have a safe and happy Halloween.
Safety while trick-or-treating
We hope that these few tips help you and your family enjoy a safe and happy Halloween. If you see any activity that you feel is suspicious, call 911 and report it to the police department.
The holiday season is one filled with joy and happiness. Accidents and being a victim of a crime can put a damper on this wonderful time. These tips can help keep you and your family safe during the holidays.
Following these tips and using common sense will help to make your holiday season safe and enjoyable for you and your family.
Vacations should be the time that families enjoy each other, experience new things, leave their troubles behind and make wonderful memories together. Unfortunately, vacations can often be filled with stress and worry, especially when families fall victim to criminals who prey on the unsuspecting vacationers. There are many ways to avoid becoming a victim and to keep your vacation as a time to be filled with fun and creating lasting memories.
Before Leaving Home
On the Road
Hotel and Motel Security
On the Town
At the Beach
On the Street and Other Places
In general, follow the four As of self-defense:
Don’t put off talking to your children about alcohol and other drugs. As early as fourth grade, kids worry about pressures to try drugs. School programs alone aren’t enough. Parents must become involved, but most parents aren’t sure how to tell their children about drugs. Open communication is one of the most effective tools you can use in helping your child avoid drug use. Talking freely and really listening show children that they mean a great deal to you.
What do you say?
How do you say it?
Remember that you set the example. Avoid contradictions between your words and your actions. Don’t use illegal drugs, period!
How can I tell if a child is using drugs?
Identifying illegal drug use may help prevent further abuse. Possible signs include:
Why do kids use drugs?
Young people say they turn to alcohol and other drugs for one or more of the following reasons:
Take A Stand!
For More Information
State and local government drug use prevention, intervention, and treatment agencies.
State and local law enforcement agencies. Private drug use treatment service listed in the telephone book Yellow Pages.
National Clearinghouse for Alcohol and Drug Information (NCADI)
P.O. Box 2345
Rockville, MD 20847-2345
Fraud is the deliberate deception of the victim(s) with the promise of goods or services that are never provided. These exist in several areas.
Tips to help avoid being scammed
Arriving at the Parking Lot
Returning to your vehicle
There are steps that you can take to make it more difficult for these thieves to obtain your personal information. According to the Federal Trade Commission, these tips can help identity theft from happening to you:
Do not give out personal information on the phone, through the mail or over the Internet unless you initiated the contact or are sure you know who you are dealing with. Identity thieves may pose as representatives of banks, Internet service providers (ISPs) and even government agencies to get you to reveal your SSN, mother’s maiden name, account numbers, and other identifying information. Before you share any personal information, confirm that you are dealing with a legitimate organization. You can check the organization’s web site as many companies post scam alerts when their name is used improperly, or you can call customer service using the number listed on your account statement or in the telephone book.
Do not carry your SSN card — leave it in a secure place.
Secure personal information in your home, especially if you have roommates, employ outside help or are having service work done in your home.
Deposit outgoing mail in post office collection boxes or at your local post office, rather than in an unsecured mailbox. Promptly remove mail from your mailbox. If you are planning to be away from home and cannot pick up your mail, call the U.S. Postal Service at 1-800-275-8777 to request a vacation hold. The Postal Service will hold your mail at your local post office until you can pick it up or are home to receive it.
To thwart an identity thief who may pick through your trash or recycling bins to capture your personal information, tear or shred your charge receipts, copies of credit applications, insurance forms, physician statements, checks and bank statements, expired charge cards that you are discarding, and credit offers you get in the mail. If you do not use the pre-screened credit card offers you receive in the mail, you can opt out by calling 1-888-5-OPTOUT (1-888-567- 8688). Please note that you will be asked for your Social Security number in order for the credit bureaus to identify your file so that they can remove you from their lists and you still may receive some credit offers because some companies use different lists.
Carry only the identification information and the number of credit and debit cards that you will actually need.
Place passwords on your credit card, bank and phone accounts. Avoid using easily available information like your mother’s maiden name, your birth date, the last four digits of your SSN or your phone number, or a series of consecutive numbers. When opening new accounts, you may find that many businesses still have a line on their applications for your mother’s maiden name. Use a password instead.
Ask about information security procedures in your workplace or at businesses, doctor’s offices or other institutions that collect identifying information from you. Find out who has access to your personal information and verify that it is handled securely. Ask about the disposal procedures for those records as well. Find out if your information will be shared with anyone else. If so, ask if you can keep your information confidential.
Give your SSN only when necessary. Ask to use other types of identifiers when possible. If your state uses your SSN as your driver’s license number, ask to substitute another number. Do the same if your health insurance company uses your SSN as your account number.
Pay attention to your billing cycles. Follow up with creditors if your bills do not arrive on time. A missing bill could mean an identity thief has taken over your account and changed your billing address to cover his tracks.
Be wary of promotional scams. Identity thieves may use phony offers to get you to give them your personal information.
Keep your purse or wallet in a safe place at work as well as any copies you may keep of administrative forms that contain your sensitive personal information.
Cancel all unused credit accounts.
When ordering new checks, pick them up at the bank, rather than having them sent to your home mailbox.
The Federal Trade Commission webpage provides consumers with a vast array of information on this topic. Their page can be viewed by clicking the below links:
There are a few basics rules that should be applied when trying to protect yourself from phone and internet scams. Trust your instinct, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is!
Tip-offs to Rip-offs
If you here these phrases or something similar, it’s time to end the phone call.
“You’ve been specially selected”
“You’ll get a free bonus if you buy”
“You’ve won 1 of 5 valuable prizes”
“You’ve won money in a foreign lottery”
“You must send the money right away”
“We’ll just put the shipping and handling charges on your credit card”
Tip-offs to Rip-offs
If you here these phrases or something similar, it’s time to delete the e-mail:
“Forward this to 10 friends in the next 10 minutes”
“You will have bad luck if you don’t forward this to everyone in your address book”
“Help this dying child”
“Microsoft is offering cash for forwarding this e-mail”
“Sign this petition and then forward it to everyone you know”
Winter can be very harsh on homes. By the time Spring rolls around, many homes are in need of many repairs and improvements. Unfortunately, there is always a scam artist right around the corner, waiting to take advantage of these situations. Some scams can include local contractors who ask for a large up-front payment and then do little or no work. Other examples include contractors who quote a price and then charge a lot more as the job progresses; and of course the plain old scam artists who offer to do a job, get their money, and disappear. By following these tips, you can prevent yourself from becoming a victim of a home improvement scam.