National First Responders Day is here, and Oxygen is celebrating by giving us a look into what really happens in the U.S.'s call centers. 911 Crisis Center focuses on the heroes of the Chagrin Valley emergency call center in Ohio, who know that one phone call could mean the difference between life and death for the person on the other end.
Just how real are these stories? Let's take a look at the reality behind 911 Crisis Center and see who is answering the call when we dial for help.
Is '911 Crisis Center' real?
Although the stories we hear in 911 Crisis Center may seem extreme, that's just because they are. As one 911 dispatcher explains in the trailer for the upcoming series, "Being on the night shift, we generally get more violent calls." And from the trailer alone, we know that those calls can range from someone admitting to a stabbing to a father needing help when his baby's delivery goes south.
Like all reality TV shows, series like 911 Crisis Center are edited to include the most dramatic moments, but those moments are real and real scary. As Oxygen's Stephanie Gomulka narrates in a sneak peek of the series, the people who are being shown on 911 Crisis Center are actual 911 dispatchers working in the Chagrin Valley area of Ohio.
"This November, Oxygen presents an exciting look at the people responsible for being the first to respond in an emergency," Stephanie says, "and the heart-stopping and heart-warming moments this dedicated team of 911 dispatchers face every day."
There's a common misconception that a 911 dispatcher is just that — a dispatcher. Many believe that role simply means answering the phone and sending over the right unit to help in the crisis. But that's not what the job really entails, which is what 911 Crisis Center is striving to show.
"Lives are at stake," Stephanie explains. "Each 911 call could be a person experiencing the most challenge moment of their lives. A dispatcher's duty is to identify the emergency and send the appropriate response team. A dispatcher has to be knowledgeable and calm, often giving life-saving first aid right over the phone."
Though one might think that could be an isolating job, talking on the phone to people who are calling in desperate need of help, the dispatchers share tools as well as support amongst their team. While they know that there is no way to be prepared for every call, they make it their goal to ensure that every member of the team is as prepared and supported as they can be.
911 Crisis Center premieres Saturday, Nov. 6 at 9 p.m. EST on Oxygen.