Thursday, May 30, 2013

PSA for the day:

1) If you have an alarm, it is good to test your alarm

2) If you have a panic alarm, it is very good to test your panic alarm

3) If you are a place of commerce, it is very very good to test your robbery alarm

4) If you are a place that deals pretty much ONLY with money (read as; bank), it is very VERY good to test your robbery alarm

5) If you are a bank, it is very VERY good to teach your tellers how to act as one unit and recognize danger and press their alarms simultaneously

6) If you are a bank and your tellers make you proud by acting as one unit, it is good to know the police will recognize a unified effort as a more serious alarm and less likely to be an accidental bump on the alarm

More than any of the previous good things...

7) If you are a bank and your tellers act as one unit while practicing hitting their robbery/hold-up buttons, notify the police department that you will be testing your robbery/hold-up buttons PRIOR to conducting aforementioned drill!

It would seem like common sense, yes?  Let's just say that common sense is lacking sometimes.

New mantra:

'Yea, though I walk through the valley of the epitome of morons, I will step ever lightly: for they are many and they are breeding.'

Welcome to my day.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Today's PSA

To friends, family and anyone else...this is your PSA for the day:

Teach your family members and *especially* your children some common sense.

More than once I have heard stories in dispatch of people drowning in their car while on the phone with 911 operators.

911 operators are trained to ask certain questions first and it can delay you getting to safety. Yes, you should answer questions asked by a 911 operator but not at the expense of your own life.

Here's the scenario -

* You accidentally drive your vehicle into a ditch, pond, lake, river...etc
* Water is coming into your vehicle
* You dial 911 on your cell phone
* The 911 operator asks your location
* You proceed to describe your location (let's assume you don't know an exact location due to being on a highway or something like that)
* The dispatcher continues to question you to try to get more information to find you and tells you not to disconnect from the call
* You stay in your seat and stay belted because you are told to not disconnect or go anywhere


You are increasing your chances of drowning! Use your brain! There IS a point when you do NOT listen to the operator and tell them you have to exit the vehicle due to water coming in. Maybe the dispatcher did not know or did not hear you say you were in a lake, river, creek, pond...etc. GET OUT OF THE FREAKING VEHICLE! Ultimately, YOU are responsible for your own safety!

I HIGHLY recommend buying a multi-tool for your car. It should be at least a knife (folding knife to avoid accidents), glass breaker and seat-belt cutter and preferably have a clip on the back so you can firmly clip it somewhere in your vehicle for easy access and somewhere it won’t go flying if you have an accident. Mine is clipped to a shelf under my steering wheel. It takes some muscle to unclip so it is doubtful anything but a major disaster will shake it loose…and even then it is a folding knife so it is not going to slice anyone if it does come loose. I have attached a picture of one of these tools so you can see what I am talking about.

The moral of this posting is that you need to prepare now for the slim possibilities that can happen in your vehicle. YOU are responsible for what happens once you turn the key. USE YOUR COMMON SENSE!

And for heaven’s sake if you are in a car filling with water, undo your seat belt and get out! This is priority! If your phone gets wet and becomes unusable you can rest assured some nosy nelly is going to stop to see the commotion and will likely have a cell phone you can use.

And when THAT happens remember to use your common sense on who you talk to and allow to give you a ride, if that is needed! *Take the knife with you when you exit the car*! There are predators who will take advantage of your vulnerability on the side of the road. Stay alert to all possible outcomes.

I know all this sounds silly but I would not feel it was necesssary to post this, if people had not died from making these mistakes.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

It's electric, Boogie woogie, woogie

Our college has a parking department with patrollers that roam the campus citing those that break the rules but that also help disabled vehicles and their owners.

They will:
- drive owners to a local gas station to get gas, if they run out.
- offer battery jumps if they leave their lights on while they are in class
- drive people around when they lose their cars (happens ALL the time)
- come open your car door if you lock your keys in the car.

But one thing our parking people cannot do is open the car doors of those with electric lock/window systems.  It is simply a policy the university has.

It almost never fails that we have to explain what an electric lock/window system is to those that call.  Really people? You don’t know what an electric lock/window system is? So the conversation goes something like this:

D = Dispatch
C = Caller

D – “Police department, this is Shannon how may I help you?”
C – “Ummm…yeah…ummm, I like locked my keys in my car. Could someone like come open my car for me?”
D – “Do you have power locks?”
C – “Power locks?”
D – “Yes, power locks and windows.”
C – “Like what’s that?”
D - ::sigh:: “Can you push one button to lock and unlock all your doors?”
C – “No.”

Now there aren’t many cars on the road these days where people don’t choose power systems so I always dig a little further.

D – “Do you have a key fob on your key chain?”
C – “Like what’s that?”
D – “Is there something on your key chain that makes your car go ‘beep beep’ when you push it and your doors unlock?”
C – “Oh yeaahhhhh… Now I see what you mean!”
D – “Well, that is a power lock system. Our patrollers cannot open vehicles with power systems. The tools they use will damage cars with those systems. You will have to contact a roadside service or a locksmith.”
C – “They can’t help me why?”
D – “Because you have power locks and windows.”
C – “Well, what if my car is already off? Then there’s no power!”


*This is a dispatch move not quite worthy of Olympic status but maybe someday it will be recognized on a national level. I am sure the first two are self-explanatory but the last is accomplished by the imprint of the keyboard on the forehead after multiple head bangs onto the keyboard.  Different letter combinations may be achieved by changing your location on your keyboard.  Recently, I have switched to my number pad in an attempt to get a SKU number appearance.