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Enhanced 9-1-1 In Washita County

posted Aug 27, 2013, 8:45 PM by Dana Church   [ updated Aug 28, 2013, 6:13 AM ]

Enhanced 9-1-1 is location driven. A well designed Geographic Information System (GIS), or mapping system, is the heart of E 9-1-1. The foundation to a precise GIS is the road numbering and the measurement-based addressing.

The Southwest Oklahoma Regional 911 Association (SWOR911) based the region’s road numbers on the Oklahoma Department of Transportation (ODOT) road numbers.  ODOT’s road numbering starts at 0,0 in the northwest corner of the Oklahoma panhandle. The road numbers increase each mile/section going south, and going east throughout the state.

Most of Washita County roads follow the section line grid. The need to systematically identify roads that do not follow section lines was identified early on. A placeholder (additional digit) representing a tenth of a mile was added to the base numbering system uniquely identifying each county road.

For example, an ODOT road identified as N 212 Rd, is identified as N 2120 Rd in the SWOR911 system. N 2120 Rd is a road that follows a section line because it’s placeholder for the tenth of a mile is “0”. A road named N 2123 Rd would indicate the road is three-tenths of a mile east of N 2120. It’s a consistent, systematic numbering system that follows the section line grid.

The original county road signs installed didn’t include the additional placeholder/digit. The original signs included NS and EW for the direction of the road; however, SWOR’s system only recognizes N and E for the pre-direction of the road.

“The road signs currently being replaced in Washita County is important because the additional digit represents a measurement which is critical to addressing and public safety,” said Dana Church, SWODA E9-1-1 Director

She went on to explain that when a 9-1-1 call is placed, location information pertaining to the 9-1-1 caller is presented to the calltaker on a computerized map. This information helps calltakers facilitate an emergency call more efficiently. The county road numbers used in the 9-1-1 system is also mirrored on county road signage at each intersection.

Assignment of a locatable 9-1-1 address is an integral part of E 9-1-1. One of the last steps bringing new addressing full circle is converting the Rural Route/Box addresses to 9-1-1 addresses. All county residents that receive rural mail delivery have been mailed a new address letter from the 911 office. 

Danette Traugott, SWODA 911 Assistant, has worked closely with each local post office and rural carrier, to complete this task. Traugott said, “Every resident needs a 9-1-1 or physical address for emergency services to locate you, and that also includes Post Office Box Holders.” Post Office Box Holders who live outside of city limits and have not received a 9-1-1 address should call 1-866-502-7970.

SWOR911 has 11 (eleven) Enhanced 9-1-1 Public Service Answering Points (PSAPs) across their six-county region. The South Western Oklahoma Development Authority (SWODA) administers the regional system. The Washita County Justice Center/Sheriff’s office is the PSAP for Washita County. For more information about E 9-1-1 go to  www.swor911.org.

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