Dispatching costs prohibitive for Elliot Lake – council enters agreements 

By Rosalind Russell – Elliot Lake council is keeping it status quo when it comes to its 911 service, as an upgrade to a more digital one was deemed ‘prohibitive’. 

Fire Chief John Thomas, who is also the Director of Emergency Services, says the current 9-1-1 system that Bell Canada is currently using is an analogue system introduced back in 1999. 

Thomas says if an individual calls 9-1-1 using a cell phone and is unable to give their location, the dispatcher uses cell phone towers to try to determine where the caller is located, usually within a kilometre, so it is not always accurate. 

However, he says if the city were to upgrade to the new digital system the cost would be prohibitive at around $1 million dollars but maintaining the system as it is would cost thousands less a year. 

In the end, council agreed that the cost for the upgrades was too much and passed two motions, one – to enter into a 10-year agreement with Bell Canada for 911 services, and the second with the Sault Ste. Marie Central Ambulance Communications Centre owned and operated by the Sault Area Hospital.  

Photo: Upgrading the 911 system wouild cost around $1-million for the City of Elliot Lake, so they have decided to sign an agreement with Bell Canada to maintain services as they are for the time being. Photo- unsplash.com

This entry was posted in Local, News. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *