Click to Visit the MABAS Division Three Home Page
MABAS Calendars Chief's Monthly Meetings Special Teams Safety Info MABAS Officers
Deerfield-Bannockburn
Des Plaines
Evanston
Glencoe
Glenview
Highland Park
Highwood
Lincolnwood
Morton Grove
Northbrook
Niles
Northfield
North Maine
Park Ridge
Prospects Heights
Skokie
Wilmette
Winnetka-Kenilworth

Regional Emergency Dispatch

The Regional Emergency Dispatch (R.E.D.) Center pro­vides Fire & Emergency Medical Services (EMS) dispatching to the Highwood, Lincolnwood, Morton Grove, Niles, Northbrook, Northfield, Wheeling, Wilmette, and Winnetka/Kenilworth Fire Departments as well as the Deerfield-Bannockburn, Lincolnshire-Riverwoods, Long Grove, North Maine, and Prospect Heights Fire Protection Districts.

R.E.D. Center and its member agencies are an integrated, multi-jurisdictional organization that provides for the capability of closest station re­sponse re­gardless of municipal boundaries through a coordinated central dispatch office. This closest station response regardless of jurisdictional boundaries has brought the greatest benefit to participating agencies by cutting response times by 25% on average. This translates into a faster attack and quicker ap­plication of extinguishing agent, and thus a more rapid return of apparatus to full service for additional alarms. It also gives the ability to provide a greater amount of needed initial resources on larger incidents.
 
Since its inception in 1977, R.E.D. Center has continued to excel in its ability to provide fast, effective EMS and fire re­sponse to emergencies. When R.E.D. Center started, it was located in the Niles Fire Department. In 1981, it relocated to the basement of Glen­view Fire Station 6. With the addition of 911 systems in 1991, R.E.D. Center became a secondary Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP).  A primary PSAP is usually a police station or other location where a 911 call is initially received. Those calls requiring fire department or EMS responses are immediately transferred to the secondary PSAP.  This transfer process happens in approximately four sec­onds.
 
Early in 1998, based on the increase in call volume and the limited space available in Glenview, the Chiefs of the member de­partments began researching sites for a new facility. The current facility in Northbrook, Illinois, which began opera­tions in December of 2001, dramatically increased the size, expandability, and function­ality of the operation. The center contains six fully functional workstations, each using PC based phone, radio, and Computer Aided Dispatch (C.A.D.) systems.  This facility pro­vides the staff with such amenities as a kitchen, locker room, and break room. This allows the center to be a self-suffi­cient and secure facility.

R.E.D. Center has a professional staff of fourteen full-time telecommunicators and one alarm-monitoring technician.  Administrative staff consists of three personnel.  The dispatch office is staffed twenty-four hours a day, with a minimum of three telecommunicators per shift. These professionals are also certified in Emergency Medical Dispatch (E.M.D.). This allows the telecommunicators to provide key medical assistance in an emergency, including pre-arrival instructions for CPR, choking, & childbirth. The Illinois Department of Public Health recognized R.E.D. Center as the first dispatch center certified to perform E.M.D.  There is a detailed quality assurance process to monitor E.M.D performance, and R.E.D Center continues to excel in this area.

The high level of service provided to the fire departments and districts is due to the dedication to excellence of each of the RED Center staff members.  These professional telecommunicators have an average of over fourteen years of experience as dispatchers, either at R.E.D. Center or at other agencies before becoming part of the op­eration. Director James P. Clausen manages this staff of professionals. Director Clausen assumed the di­rectorship in 2001 after serving twenty years as a member of the staff. Director Clausen was in­strumental in the opening of the new facility in Northbrook.

In addition to the responsibilities enumerated above, R.E.D Center serves as the headquarters and divisional dispatching center for Division 3 of the Mutual Aid Box Alarm System (M.A.B.A.S.). Division 3 is made up of eighteen fire departments in an area north of Chi­cago and immediately west of Lake Michigan. The purpose of M.A.B.A.S. is to provide the im­mediate assistance of equipment and trained personnel to any jurisdiction experiencing a large emergency or multiple simultaneous emergencies.  Rapid responses under M.A.B.A.S. are accomplished using pre-arranged “box alarm” cards. The telecommunicators at R.E.D. Center will use these cards to dispatch the needed resources. All radio com­munications and additional requests are coor­dinated by R.E.D. Center.

The staff of the dispatch office is also responsible for the coordination of any suburban response into the City of Chicago for any incident north of 22nd Street, as well as any suburban response to an incident at O’Hare Interna­tional Airport.

R.E.D. Center was recognized for excellence by the State of Illinois. Thus, R.E.D. Center was cho­sen to serve as the primary dispatch center for the coordination of any statewide responses of firefighting personal and equipment, EMS personnel and equipment, hazardous materials response teams, and/or technical rescue teams.  When mobilization of these resources is made pursuant to the direction of the Illinois Governor’s office, R.E.D. Center coordinates the responses of these units to any natural or man-made disaster and any incident of terrorism within the State of Illinois or in another state as requested through a federal state-to-state mutual aid system (as was the case when Illinois mobilized 250+ fire apparatus and nearly 1,000 firefighters to New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in 2005).

Since 1977, R.E.D. Center has established itself as an efficient, cost-effective operation due to its sound man­agement practices and its professional staff members, who are most dedicated to protecting their families, friends, and neighbors. The highly progressive Board of Directors and Joint Chiefs Authority remain committed to laying the groundwork for ad­ditional improvements that will insure R.E.D. Center’s continued progress and further success.



  Home | Calendars | Chief’s Monthly Meeting | Special Teams | Safety Info | Officers


Mutual Aid Box Alarm System | Division III Headquarters
1842 Shermer Road Northbrook | Illinois 60062
Copyright © 2002-2004 MABAS Division III All Rights Reserved

Chicago Website Design by hurriKane Solutions

Images Provided by Karl Klotz