HARRISBURG, AR (KAIT) - Harrisburg Police Department is hoping to switch dispatch services soon.
The department doesn’t have a dispatch center of their own, and currently rely on the Poinsett County Sheriff’s Office for dispatch services.
Chief Cassie Brandon said that means her officers have to answer the phone through radios they carry any time it sounds, in case the call is an emergency.
She said having to answer the radio can distract officers from whatever call they might be on, which could be dangerous.
“My number one priority is the safety of the officers that work here and the safety of the public, and I think this is a way to meet both of those goals.” said Brandon.
The department is hoping that switching over to Trumann’s police dispatch service will help alleviate the distraction.
Trumann’s police department has a computer aided dispatch system, which allows for more detailed information and is compatible with HPD’s reporting software.
Harrisburg’s department will still have a direct line to the Poinsett County Sheriff’s Office.
Chief Brandon said the sheriff’s office will still be able to monitor radio traffic between Harrisburg and Trumann departments.
“Law enforcement is a family, and if someone needs help they’re going to be here and vise versa. If they need help we’re going to be there.” said Brandon.
Chief Brandon said that the amount the department pays for dispatch services will increase, but it is something that is budgeted for.
“For what we’re paying to improve our safety and the safety of the public, I think we’re getting a really good deal.” said Brandon.
The city of Harrisburg has already approved a resolution for a contract with Trumann’s dispatch services.
Chief Brandon said the next step is waiting for an answer from the city of Trumann.
If everything is approved, they hope to switch services by the beginning of next year.