Marshall County’s E-911 director delivered in Frankfort this week a grant application for $200,000 to improve emergency dispatch equipment.
The existing emergency radio equipment loses signal in the southern part of the county, specifically in Hardin and Aurora. Director Chris Freeman says the obsolete systems are a danger to emergency responders.
Freeman hopes the Kentucky Office of Homeland Security approves the grant and expects the application to score highly because of the county’s sustainability plan and basic need. Judge Executive Kevin Neal says Marshall County would front the expense and the state would reimburse the county.
If approved, new installation would begin in August and be in place by December.
Marshall County’s sheriff says the outdated transmitting system is endangering the lives of law enforcement. The Fiscal Court this week approved the $200,000 grant application.
The system has only one speaker and is unable to switch between channels. In an emergency situation, the inefficient equipment can lead to chaos on the channel as various units try to communicate with dispatchers. Sheriff Eddie McGuire says police have “played Russian roulette for the last ten or eleven years. Just praying nothing goes wrong and no one loses their life. So, it’s time to take care of it.”
Hardin Mayor Randall Scott said any help that the county E911 can receive financially to upgrade the system and radio equipment for first responders is great.