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Dispatchers say it's harder to get to you in an emergency, blames cellphones

Posted at 5:04 PM, Sep 27, 2016

You dial 911 because you need help and you need it fast, but dispatchers say it's harder than ever to get to you in an emergency.

It's all about location. Back in the day, tracking down an emergency was easy at a landline home or business, but with cell phones, it's not. 

The proliferation of cell phones has made it harder for emergency crews to reach people in need. 

"People have the misconception that we know where they're at. That, unfortunately, is not the case," dispatcher Kim Sutton, told News 5. 

Just this past weekend Sutton said two callers were extremely difficult to locate. One from a fire and another from a fatal car crash.  

"They didn't know where they were," Sutton said. 

Crews were able to reach them, but the issues tracking them down delayed emergency response time.

Departments are now sending out a message - know where you are.

"You can't rely on technology. You have to go back to the good old days, and know where you are," Inspector Bill Holland, from the Summit County Sheriff's Office, said.