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Carlton County Communications Division is the vital link to emergency services and establishes professional standards through cooperation, continued education, and commitment to excellence.
Our goal is to make an effective difference in the community by providing high-quality, professional communication and to ensure responder safety, while working to save lives and protect property during routine and emergency situations.
911 Dispatch Information
The Sheriff’s Office 911 Center is the County’s Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP). In addition to answering 911 calls and dispatching appropriate responses, the Dispatch Center works with rural addressing issues and enters all of the Carlton County arrest warrants.
The Dispatch center employs a staff of ten full-time telecommunicators. This staff provides services for two fire districts, nine fire departments, nine first responder units, four ambulance services and five different law enforcement agencies. The entire staff is dedicated to providing system users and the public with the best public safety response available to them. At this time we are working to add Emergency Medical Dispatch to the services provided.
Dispatchers have several training opportunities throughout the year to refresh and learn new skills, thus assuring that the latest public safety information is available to staff, users and the public.
What Happens on a 911 Call
When you dial 911, your call will be answered by a 911 Dispatcher. The dispatcher will ask questions to determine the type of emergency service needed. Questions generally asked fall into categories of Who, What, Where, When, and depending on the situation, Why. It's important to listen to the dispatcher and answer the questions asked.
The dispatcher must ask you specific questions in order to ensure you receive the kind of help needed. It may seem that you are asked a lot of questions and that a lot of time has passed, however trained dispatchers will only ask questions that are necessary in getting you the proper help you need. Often times the dispatcher will start emergency response units and will return to ask the follow-up questions. The main objective is to remain calm and listen to the dispatcher's instructions...help is on the way.
When to Dial 911
Anytime you find yourself in a situation that requires an emergency response from a law enforcement agency, a fire department, or an ambulance service you should call 911. As a general rule, if you face a situation where you are trying to decide whether to dial 911 or not, dial 911. It is always better to be safe than risk the chance of not getting the help you need, when you need it.
In an emergency: Call 911 to report a crime in progress, a fire, a serious illness or injury or any situation requiring immediate response of the police, fire or ambulance services.
In a non-emergency: Call 218-384-3632 when you have a less threatening situation which requires a non-immediate response from police, fire or ambulance such as parking complaints and barking dogs.
911 Public Education
Carlton County also supports efforts to educate the public about using 911 appropriately through several community engagements and events.
911 Dispatchers attend career and wellness fairs, the county fair, as well as local schools to promote 911 education. At the schools, the students have an opportunity to learn when and how to call 911 through a short power point and video along with the accompaniment of other emergency personnel. The presentation is aimed at elementary aged children; primarily 1st grade students.
The Sheriff’s Office also allows approved groups to tour the Dispatch Center to ask questions they might have about 911.
Text-to-911 should only be used if a voice call cannot be made. For more information, please see Text-To-911 Fact Sheet (PDF).