KEYSER - Luke McKenzie, director of the Office of Emergency Services, has requested that the Mineral County Commission approve a resolution that would classify Mineral County 911 telecommunicators as first responders.

By Jean Braithwaite
Tribune Correspondent
KEYSER - Luke McKenzie, director of the Office of Emergency Services, has requested that the Mineral County Commission approve a resolution that would classify Mineral County 911 telecommunicators as first responders.
The three commissioners did approve the resolution at the recent county government meeting, as McKenzie said, the 911 workers are “true first responders.”
He also gave a description from the present document as to what types of duties are expected of the 911 telecommunicators, who are, “A vital link to make sure people get the help they need.”
McKenzie added that the telecommunicators “talk to our citizens on what is often the worst time of their lives and give instructions for a medical call or for anything else.”
Giving a rundown of the number of employees at the 911 Center, he said there are 10 full-time telecommunicators, two part-time telecommunicators, and one part-time mapping and addressing coordinator.
The submitted document also included the number of calls handled by the 911 employees as being 22,503 for 2018, and so far in the present year, the incident reports are over 20,000.
From the presented document, McKenzie said the Mineral County 911 dispatches for all 13 fire and EMS agencies in the county, along with the sheriff’s office, Natural Resources police, Potomac State College Campus Police, and all the municipalities except Keyser.
The resolution showed the 911 safety communicators “heroically answer 911 emergency calls around the clock, giving safety instructions in difficult situations.”
Another item of business discussed by the county Tuesday included a communication from the attorney at the law office of Kirkwood and Roger dealing with needing guardrails at a specific area at Keyser High School.
The letter showed a concern among a group of parents about a 15-feet drop off area near the entrance of the school.
In the letter, the parents felt that a vehicle could roll if it went off the road in this area of the driveway.
McKenzie mentioned, “No accidents have been reported” at this Keyser High School area.
Roger Leatherman, commission president, said the area of concern is “on Mineral County Board of Education property.”