What is the PSOC?
Bergen County has been operating as a PSAP (Public Safety Answering Point) since 9-1-1 originated in the State of New Jersey. Originally our call center was based out of the Bergen County Police Headquarters in Hackensack, NJ. In December of 2008, ground broke to construct an over $12 million dollar state of the art facility, that was complete in June of 2010. The building, located at the Police, Fire and EMS training facility located in Mahwah, NJ is over 29,000 square feet, consisting of a PSAP Call Center, Dispatch Center, OEM, Public Safety Administration and an Emergency Operations Center. This facility has been designed and built to be equivalent to LEED Silver level of Certification. It is powered with (2) 600KW generators; each with capacity for 72 hours each generator at full load.
The County of Bergen has taken on an initiative of consolidation and shared services. In the last four years we have become a PSAP for 22 municipalities for a total of just over 200,000 residents. We are the busiest PSAP within the County. Over 230,000 calls were answered in 2014. Our PSAP is also a backup/overflow for all 70 municipalities within the county serving a resident population of 905,116.
The larger the communications agency, the more effective the staff will be at handling emergencies as a result of better training, more experienced personnel, and better technological resources. One to two communications professionals in each municipality are in no position to assist any other agency when an emergency arises. However those same personnel, in a centralized communications center, are able to work together as a team to mitigate an emergency, therefore drastically improving the safety of responders and the public.