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Calls to 9-1-1 dispatch down, but fire dept. calls rose dramatically



Dispatch calls down 1 percent, fire calls up 29

Fewer people in La Crosse County called 9-1-1 dispatch last year, compared to the year before, but the fire dept. is busy.

The volume for 9-1-1 calls is down about one percent, according to the head of emergency services, Jay Loeffler, but he told the city-county joint committee that local firefighting calls went up 29 percent in the last year. That works out to about seven calls to the fire dept. a day.

Loeffler can’t prove it, but he thinks the smartphone has helped reduce the use of the 9-1-1 service in recent years. He added the dispatch crew is working on ways to accept more texts in case of emergency.


The center gets about 28,000 calls a year – 700 a day – but only 10 percent of those are actual emergencies.

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.

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