Joint ERC provides quicker 911 response time Published Sept. 28, 2006 By Master Sgt Darlene Foote 22nd Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs MCCONNELL AIR FORCE BASE, Kan. -- Nearly seven years of hard work and planning came to fruition recently when the 22nd Air Refueling Wing Security Forces and Fire Department opened the doors to a new consolidated Emergency Response Center. The ERC was phase one of a project designed to co-locate security forces and fire department personnel in the same room to provide the customer with a single point of contact for any type of emergency that may arise. McConnell is the first Air Mobility Command base to implement an ERC. According to Staff Sgt. Jeremy Wray, NCO in charge fire dispatch, the ERC will enable a quicker response time from SFS and fire department personnel. "This will also give us a better opportunity to share information and learn how the other works," said Sergeant Wray. Currently, the ERC is staffed with security forces dispatchers who handle all security issues and fire department dispatchers who take all fire and medical calls. However, the plan is to train all team members to be able to facilitate any emergency calls that come in. While customers won't notice a change outwardly, things are definitely different. According to Wray, the ERC will go a long way in making things better for customers by simplifying the process. "Because we are sitting right next to each other, the number of calls that have to be made to staff response to an emergency is significantly reduced. That, in turn, reduces duplication of work and enables us to get there quicker," he said. "Combining these two critical response agencies will increase speed, timeliness and accuracy to get the right people and equipment on the scene as soon as possible enabling us to provide better support to the McConnell community," said Col. Richard Wesche, 22nd Mission Support Group Commander. Phases two and three involve obtaining new furniture and more modernized equipment as well as upgrading the technology level of the center. The entire project is expected to be complete within the next two years.