BUCKHANNON — On March 25, 2020, Governor Jim Justice approved House Bill 4123 that was passed by the West Virginia Legislature, clarifying that 911 telecommunication workers are included in the definition of those individuals who perform “emergency services” during a disaster. We often forget about our true “first responders” – our 911 telecommunications personnel in the public safety community. The second week of April is dedicated to honoring 911 center workers, formally known as “National Public Safety Telecommunicator Week.”
This week, on April 15, Commissioners proclaimed the week of April 11-17 as National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week in Upshur County. Several of Upshur County’s telecommunicators were present for the proclamation. This proclamation was made in effort to bring awareness to the frequently unnoticed hard work and dedication that these first responders provide to the Upshur community.
The proclamation reads, “Whereas, emergencies occur 24 hours per day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year… Whereas, such response would not be possible without Public Safety Telecommunicators who are the first and most critical contract our citizens have with emergency services; and, Whereas, Public Safety Telecommunicators of the Upshur County Emergency 911 Communication Center exhibit compassion, understanding and professionalism during the performance of their jobs on a daily basis.” The proclamation also emphasizes the effort these individuals put forth amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.
During this time last year, Assistant Director Kimbra Wachob told The Record Delta, “No one ever calls 911 on a good day… In my opinion, my staff are some of the best telecommunicators in the area. They make daily sacrifices in order to keep the public and other first responders safe.” As telecommunicators, the staff at the Upshur County 911 Center have walked callers through very intense and chaotic situations such as childbirth, airway control for a juvenile that was choking, administering CPR, gathering information for a criminal pursuit, and many other emergency situations.
It is recommended that 911 calls be made for police, fire or medical emergencies only. Non-emergency needs should be directed to non-emergency phone numbers. Take time this week to give your local 911 operators a round of applause to celebrate and honor them for their hard work and dedication to the Upshur community.
In other business, County Commissioners heard from attorney Charles Wilson, with Magnolia Associates, LLC Thursday morning, regarding the Commission’s approval for the expansion of the Rock Cave Family Dollar/Dollar Tree.
Magnolia Associates, LLC has entered into a lease agreement with Family Dollar for the operation of a retail variety store selling general merchandise, including food and beverages, explained Magnolia Associates member Seth Wilson in a letter to Commissioners. The lease amendment requires the owner of the premises to build and construct a 2,000 square foot expansion onto the existing store. Following that proper permits are obtained from the Upshur County Building Permit Officer, Commissioners provided their approval for the project.