Vancouver, B.C. — Today at 8:10 a.m. Burnaby RCMP’s emergency call-taking and dispatch services were successfully integrated into the regional emergency communications centre, becoming the 14th police agency to be dispatched by E-Comm and the third to join in less than one year.
The transition of Canada’s second largest RCMP detachment to E-Comm is another positive step toward the amalgamation of multiple police dispatch centres within the region into a larger, more integrated communications model. This shared approach to dispatch means staffing and technical resources can be shared among all of the agencies dispatched by E-Comm, providing for increased capacity and faster police response when managing day-to-day emergencies and in times of peak 9-1-1 call volume. This shared approach complements and capitalizes on other regional emergency communication initiatives such as the single radio network provided by E-Comm for emergency services in Metro Vancouver and Abbotsford.
Veteran Burnaby RCMP dispatchers Wanda Sleightholme and Tami McIntosh confidently assumed command of the dispatch channels, welcoming RCMP members over the air with radio confirmation of the successful transition. Sleightholme and McIntosh, along with 40 other full and part-time Burnaby call-takers and dispatchers, will continue to support Burnaby officers and residents from their new location at E-Comm.
Immediately following the official changeover to E-Comm, RCMP Chief Superintendent Dave Critchley addressed officers over the radio:
“I’m speaking to you from the E-Comm communications centre where I’ve been monitoring the transition which I’m pleased to say has been seamless. Today is an important day for the Burnaby RCMP detachment, our members and the public we proudly serve. I am pleased to announce that moments ago we transitioned over to E-Comm, marking the start of a new partnership between our organizations in yet another step in the continued evolution of public safety for our community. Congratulations everyone and have a good shift.”
All Burnaby emergency communications operators were offered positions at E-Comm prior to the transition. The staff will continue to perform the duties they were responsible for at the Burnaby detachment. Extensive training sessions were arranged over the past few months to help transitioning staff familiarize themselves with their new surroundings, while E-Comm employees were busy learning about Burnaby’s operations, community and geography in order to provide a broader base of support for their new colleagues.
The City of Burnaby announced in February that it would be relocating its police dispatch operations to E-Comm after an extensive evaluation of their current operations determined a move would provide increased sustainability, risk mitigation and significant cost savings. Burnaby Councillor Pietro Calendino cited numerous advantages to moving to E-Comm.
“Our partnership with E-Comm will allow us to continue to provide our community with quality police service in a cost effective and operationally-efficient manner,” explained Councillor Calendino, chair of Burnaby’s Community Policing Committee. “This transition offers us several key advantages such as enhanced cross-communication between agencies, a larger workforce for better coverage during major and extended emergency events and access to top-tier technology.”
The successful integration of Burnaby RCMP’s dispatch services was the result of rigorous operational and technical planning between the City of Burnaby, the RCMP and E-Comm. Burnaby is the 14th police agency dispatched by E-Comm, which also dispatches for 19 fire departments throughout southwest B.C.
“We believe that integrating police services, including dispatch operations, is a key element in helping create safer communities throughout B.C.,” said David Guscott, E-Comm president and CEO. “Our new partnership with Burnaby RCMP is a significant milestone for our organization, and we are committed to ensuring the detachment receives high-quality, responsive, resilient service, 24-hours a day.”
E-Comm answers close to one-million 9-1-1 calls each year for Metro Vancouver, the Sunshine Coast Regional District, Whistler, Squamish and the Squamish-Lillooet Regional District (south). For tips on using 9-1-1 and more information about E-Comm visit www.ecomm911.ca or follow E-Comm’s Twitter feed @ecomm911_info.
E-Comm provides dispatch services for more than 30 police and fire departments within Metro Vancouver, the Sunshine Coast Regional District, Whistler, Squamish and the Squamish-Lillooet Regional District (south) including:
- Bowen Island RCMP
- Burnaby RCMP
- New Westminster Police Department
- Deas Island (RCMP Traffic Services)
- Port Mann (RCMP Traffic Services)
- Richmond RCMP
- Ridge Meadows RCMP
- Squamish RCMP
- Sunshine Coast RCMP
- UBC RCMP
- Vancouver Police Department
- West Vancouver Police Department
- Whistler RCMP
- Pemberton RCMP
- Stl’átl’imx Tribal Police
- Birken Fire Protection Society
- Delta Fire & Emergency Services
- East Howe Sound Fire Protection Association (under SLRD South)
- Britannia Beach Volunteer Fire Department (also serving Furry Creek)
- Egmont & District Volunteer Fire Department
- Gibsons & District Volunteer Fire Department
- Garibaldi Fire Department
- Halfmoon Bay Fire Department
- New Westminster Fire/Rescue Service
- Pemberton Fire Department
- Pender Harbour Fire Department
- Port Moody Fire-Rescue
- Richmond Fire-Rescue Services
- Roberts Creek Fire Department
- Sechelt Volunteer Fire Department
- Squamish Fire-Rescue
- Vancouver Fire & Rescue Services
- Whistler Fire Department
604-215-4956 or 604-640-1342 (pager)