911 Is A Joke: Atlanta Emergency Dispatcher Sends Ambulance To Wrong Location As A Woman Lay Dying Inside A Demolished House!!

- By Bossip Staff Categories: Did You Know, For Your Information, Get Your Life Together

It’s so hard to find good help nowadays…

An Atlanta 911 dispatcher initially sent emergency crews to the wrong address when responding to the May 7 accident in which a homeless woman was fatally injured in the demolition of a house, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution has learned.
In the first 911 call, a tape of which was obtained by the AJC, the caller identifies the correct location of the incident — Daniel Street in the Old Fourth Ward — four times.

The dispatcher, whose name could not be obtained Friday, even repeated the correct address. But then he dispatched emergency responders to a location on Daniel Avenue — five miles east of where Janice Durham, 51, was dying while trapped under the rubble of the demolished house, the AJC confirmed Friday.

“That’s really disheartening,” said Randevyn Joyner, 32, the man who placed the 911 call. “For a 911 operator to make that kind of error, it is really quite unacceptable in the field of what they do, because it could mean somebody’s life. That’s a piece of information — that’s a piece of the puzzle — that they have to get right every time.”

As a result of the error, the first unit to arrive at the correct location — an Atlanta fire crew — got there 18 minutes after the first 911 call came in. A Grady EMS ambulance arrived one minute later.

The conversation between the caller, the dispatcher, and the emergency team went as follows:

“There’s been a demolishing of a house and there is a woman inside,” he says, according to the tape. “The house is being demolished by order of the city — code compliance ordered it to be demolished. There’s a woman inside the house. We need an ambulance immediately.”

Once he gets off the phone, the dispatcher calls Grady EMS, the city’s ambulance provider.

But when giving a Grady EMS staffer the information, the dispatcher misspeaks, replacing ‘Street’ with ‘Avenue.’

“I’ve got 68 Daniel Avenue, Southeast,” he says.

Off the ambulance went a minute later, heading to that location, Grady spokeswoman Denise Simpson said.

Nine minutes after the original 911 call, a second man phoned the city’s 911 dispatchers.

“We’ve called and it was 10 minutes ago,” he says. “We need an ambulance here pronto.”

The dispatcher quickly transfers him to the Grady EMS phone line. He gives the same information to the ambulance dispatcher. He tells the dispatcher, too, that they’ve been waiting 10 minutes for an ambulance.

“We’re on the way, sir,” the dispatcher tells him.

Before hanging up, the caller’s frustration shows.

“This is ridiculous,” he says.

It wasn’t until after that conversation that the dispatchers realize the mistake.

“He said Daniel Street. Is it Daniel Street?” the Grady dispatcher says.

“Yeah, he gave us a different address. We have 68 Daniel Avenue,” the 911 dispatcher responds. “Let me let them know to have them respond to that location … Daniel Avenue is a different address.”

So this woman dies because some dumb-a**, coffee sippin’, switchboard operator, can’t get an address right?! They ought to bring the dispatcher up on charges, bet if this happened in some rich white neighborhood they would have gotten it right…



  • 7lady

    Like the guy said..with that kinda job there is no room for error. But human error does occur. That dispatcher is probably hella sorry for this.

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  • http://diaryofarionataylor.com Ariona Taylor

    Forgiveness is bliss, but in reality, write down the damn address if they are similar!!!


  • A412

    The other question that should be asked is why didn’t demolition crews check the house before the demo? Should there be any responsibility on them?

    • ShawnNeverSettles

      That’s EXACTLY what I thought when I read this article, I mean really, just not checking the way the economy is, which has caused an enormous amount of people to be homeless. It’s sad that this has taken place.




  • 1TruDiva w/the PlatinumVocals!!

    this is sad all the way across the board. I feel for the dispatcher because his mistake may have cost a life. One raining morning on his way to work, a very close friend of mine hit a homeless woman. She died the next day. They checked EVERYTHING…his phone to see if he was on it at the time, the condition of his tires, speed, etc. He was cleared of everything but he still carries the burden of that incident.

    My heart goes out to homeless people. They are sometimes victims of an array of crimes and society oftentimes never views them as human beings who have fallen on hard times but human beings none the less.

    • ShawnNeverSettles

      I really hate this took place with your friend. I cannot imagine what that must be like on a day to day basis.
      You are right, it doesn’t matter a person’s circumstances, they are still human beings, eventhough they may have fallen on hard times.

  • 1TruDiva w/the PlatinumVocals!!

    Thanks Shawn. The thing is, my friend is one of the most kindest, caring people I know. When I say my heart goes out to him…it really does. He beats himself up over it all the time with thoughts like, “If I hadn’t have taken the route, If I would’ve called in to work, why didn’t I see her…..”

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  • Kenedy

    Even though it is the dispatcher’s job…..human error does occur, & especially in high pressure situations, we are more susceptible to error. & i also agree with those who are saying that a sweep of the building should have been made a few minutes prior to the demolition

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