Home > Procedures > Callout Procedures
Jan Largent handles the dispatching for callouts. He will be referred to as the "dispatcher" in the description that follows. Scott Carpenter will be the alternate if Jan is unavailable.
The team uses two systems to alert people to a callout: a pager system and a computerized phone alert system. These will be discussed below.
Your obligations as a member on the active callout list are as follows.
When you become callout qualified, contact Eric Bivona to get a pager. The service is currently donated by Central Vermont Communications of Rutland, VT. The cost for the pager is $40.00. Monthly access fees are waived courtesy of Central Vermont Communications. Members who purchase team pagers are asked to donate those pagers to the team should they decide to leave the team.
When a callout (or other team activity) occurs, the dispatcher will send out a page alerting the team. When you look at the alpha-numeric window of your pager, you will see something like
The first number (11) is the urgency of the callout (pager codes) and the remaining numbers are the dispatcher's call back number. You can let the dispatcher know of your availability by calling this number. It is also the number to call for status checks, additional directions, etc.
The meanings of the pager codes are:
11 - immediate callout - contact dispatch officer for availability and information
One Call Now System
The team subscribes to a computerized phone alert system called One Call Now. When a callout occurs, the dispatcher will call the system and leave a phone message describing the subject, any pertinent information about the subject, and drive directions to the staging area. He will then initiate the broadcast of the message. The One Call Now system will call every phone number for every person on the active callout list and will continue to call the numbers until every phone has been answered by a person, voice mail or an answering machine. At the end of the message, there will be a polling choice. Usually, this will ask the person to press 1 if they can respond or press 2 if they cannot respond. Please make sure to press one number or the other. This will allow the dispatcher to know who is responding and who is not.
The caller ID on the phone message will be 603-398-2295. That will allow users to know that the call is from the UVWRT.
One Call Now has inserted a new, automated message "if you would like to opt out of future calls . . . " preceding the "please enter your response now" polling prompt. When OCN calls your number for a callout, please let the "opt out" message play through (i.e., just ignore it!) then let the polling prompt play through to the end, pause a half-second and then enter a "1", "2", or "3", wait to hear the full "thank-you" message, pause a half-second, then hang up. Please pay attention to what you are keying in because sometimes we get a "5" or a "6" and are not sure what that means but can interpolate that a "5" might be a mis-keyed "2" and a "6" a miskeyed "3" due to their placement on a keypad.
If you miss information in the phone message, you can call 877-698-3261 and listen to it again. You can also call this number to respond to the polling question rather than during the initial call.
Putting It All Together
So, here is what happens when a callout occurs.
The requesting agency (Vermont State Police, NH Fish and Game, New England K-9) will call Scott and give him information about the subject, search start time and directions to the staging area. Scott will then call the dispatcher and relay that information.
The dispatcher will then:
Your obligation at this point is to let the dispatcher know if you can respond or not. It is extremely important that you do this. Search organizers will be asking Scott for how many people will be responding from the team and the only way the dispatcher will be able to give him that information is if you let him know. You can do this in three ways listed below in the order of preference.