Regional center now dispatching calls for Washington Twp.

Washington Twp. officials say a switch to using a regional dispatch system for emergency calls will save hundreds of thousands of dollars each year.

The Montgomery County Regional Dispatch Center (RDC) is now dispatching calls for the Washington Twp. Fire Department. The change became effective on Wednesday.

RDC dispatches police and fire calls for Dayton, Germantown, Clayton, Miami Twp., Miamisburg, Trotwood, the Montgomery County sheriff’s office, Washington Twp. and several other local communities.

The transition to RDC is expected to save about $500,000 annually, according to Fire Chief Bill Gaul. The cost savings from contracting with the county will be used to address staffing challenges caused by a shortage of part-time firefighters, he added.

“This provides the best of both worlds – high-end, exceptionally reliable service that also is cost-effective for taxpayers,” Gaul said.

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Township officials say that since moving dispatchers to leased space at the RDC in January 2017, the township has benefited from the center’s advanced mapping technology, extensive equipment backup, and economies of scale.

“We’ve had the chance to experience the RDC setting and have been pleased with how our service levels have been maintained. It’s been a good move, a good investment,” Gaul said.

He added that other aspects of local emergency dispatch have not changed. All emergency calls made within unincorporated Washington Township are answered by the RDC and all emergency calls originating in the city of Centerville are answered by the Centerville Police Department before being transferred to the RDC.

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In 2006, when a consultant studied emergency dispatching in Montgomery County, there were 17 separate dispatch centers. The consultant concluded that taxpayers and municipalities would save about $5 million a year and get better coordination between communities in major disasters by replacing the separate centers with a consolidated center.

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