The city’s problem-plagued emergency 911 system failed four times today, forcing FDNY dispatchers to resort to pen and paper to scribble down calls and then radio the information out to ambulances.
Fire officials said the first glitch — caused by old computer software that froze the EMS system — lasted nearly a half-hour, from 7:42 to 8:10 a.m.
The second shut-down in the computers — which, when operating properly, are designed to save precious time in life-and-death situations — lasted about 5 minutes.
An FDNY official couldn’t immediately say when the second incident occurred, nor the time or duration of the third and fourth snafus. They only said the total time down was around 45 minutes.
The department spokeswoman Elisheva Zakheim, said 100 calls came in during the first shut-down.
Sources said the problem software is old and set to be replaced in 2015. They said it is not part of the $88 million system put into place in May at the city's general 911 call-intake center. That system is known as CAD, for Computer Assisted Dispatch.
Instead, it involves the older ambulance-dispatch system used by FDNY EMS workers, who receive calls from the intake center.
The Police Department's system was not affected by the glitches, sources said.
CAD itself has had its own share of problems right from the start, experiencing several shutdowns since it went online May 29. It is part of an overall $2 billion project pushed by Mayor Bloomberg to revamp the city’s entire emergency-response system.
I love to read suck up "legacy" columns from corporate whore journalists like Bill Keller wondering how the next mayor will be able to follow in the footsteps of the uber-competent Mayor Bloomberg.
12 years, over $2 billion dollars and the 911 system still does not work.
Yeah, that kind of "competence" is going to be so hard to follow.