Shortage of 911 Operators Is Delaying Police Response in Cities Nationwide

The shortage could have tragic consequences, according to experts.

A shortage of 911 operators is delaying police response nationwide.

Cities around the country, including New Orleans, Dallas, Los Angeles, Portland, Cleveland and Atlanta, are struggling to answer hundreds of thousands of 911 calls.

Michelle Yi, a reality star on “Survivor Fiji,” was attacked by a homeless woman in Santa Monica. Her friend says when she called 911, she was told operators were "currently busy."

In Atlanta, Daniel Grossman says he was put on hold for more than two minutes after calling 911 over a road rage incident. 

“You assume certain basic emergency services. You assume that when you pick up and call 911, someone will answer,” Grossman told Inside Edition.

Every second counts when you call 911. Emergency calls are supposed to be answered within 10 to 15 seconds. But a shortage of 911 operators and a huge increase in calls due to an uptick in crime is making that standard impossible to keep, leading to potentially tragic consequences.

Naisha Chapman says she grabbed her phone after a man was shot dead outside her home in Philadelphia

“I called 911, and the phone just rang and rang and rang,” Chapman said.

Experts say the shortage of 911 operators is due to stress, low pay and other factors.

“The shift work and the lengthy hours are also factors that contribute to people saying, ‘Hey, I can do better elsewhere or I can't put up with this,’” said Brian Fontes, CEO of the National Emergency Number Association.

More than 200 million 911 calls are placed every year in the United States.

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