911 dispatchers get swamped

Hamilton County and city of Cincinnati 911 dispatchers have reported several calls regarding the earthquake, but no reports of damage.

Cincinnati dispatchers said that several calls came to them this morning, many not sure what was going on. A dispatcher said that many callers thought a burglar was trying to break into their home. A Hamilton County dispatcher said many people thought there was an explosion, while others wondered if they were delusional when they felt their homes shaking.

The Hamilton County dispatcher I spoke to, who started her shift at 7 a.m. and is on her first day back after maternity leave. She said that those dispatchers who were already at the Hamilton Avenue communications center in Colerain Township were asked to clock-in early and man the phones because they were getting so many calls.

“If anything else weird happens today I am going to take that as a sign and go home and be with my kids,” she said, laughing. “I guess this is the thrill of the job.”

Author: Joe Wessels

Joe Wessels is a freelance journalist and photographer. Wessels covers local news events for Thomson Reuters news service and features for About.com's Cincinnati Guide site, plus is the executive director of hyperlocal news site, iRhine.com. He wrote for The Cincinnati Post, covering Cincinnati City Hall and Hamilton County government and wrote a weekly political column, which continued weekly at Cincinnati CityBeat. Previously, he was a reporter for the Cincinnati Business Courier and writes or has written for several publications in Cincinnati and around the country including The Cincinnati Enquirer, Las Vegas Review-Journal, Cincinnati Magazine, Cincy Magazine and the Sacramento News & Review. He is a native of Colerain Township, one of Cincinnati's western suburbs, and now lives in Over-the-Rhine near downtown Cincinnati. He has a Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology and a journalism writing certificate from the University of Cincinnati. He also graduated from Colerain High School, is an avid photographer, news junkie and was once a roller rink disc jockey, and sometimes rides a scooter around town.

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