Summer is officially underway, and while that means more free time for many of us enjoying the outdoors, for first responders and 911 dispatchers, it often means more time working to keep everyone safe.
Mike Page with the Grand Junction Fire Department says when temperatures go up, so does first responder staffing and call volume to 911, "We see a little more traffic in the summertime, so we see a few more car wrecks."
Page says the department often puts an extra ambulance on duty during the day to be prepared for increases in car wrecks, and especially, recreation accidents.
Dispatch Supervisor Glen Klaich says more calls means more dispatchers working to take them. "It does go up every summer, people are outside when it's nice, we get more people that are out drinking, and other issues like that and the call volume naturally will go up because of that."
Klaich says you can help both departments this summer by being prepared for your activities, and staying calm in an emergency.
Page says although everyone's in a hurry to get out there and enjoy the sunshine, spring or summer fever can be dangerous. "It makes people not think as well as the usually do, and so you have to be real cautious."
So have fun, but be safe.
The Fire Department says you should make sure when you head out that you have the necessities, like sunscreen and lots of water, and if you're hiking, or biking, or out in remote locations, remember how you got there and know how to explain your location, should you need to call for help.