Emergency Dispatcher at Her DeskThe Winston-Salem Police Communications Division is comprised of 50 dedicated employees who work around the clock 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to provide an exceptional service to the community. The division plays a vital role within the Police/Fire Departments and is often referred to as the heartbeat of these departments. Communications personnel are highly trained to process all calls received expediently, following established departmental policy and procedure.

The primary objectives of the unit are to ensure clear communication, accurate dissemination of information, timely dispatch of appropriate apparatus, exercising sound judgment/decision-making skills to ensure citizen/officer safety, and the protection of property.

Incoming Calls

The Communications Division receives, interprets, classifies and appropriately dispatches or re-routes both emergency and non-emergency calls for service for investigative assignment and response. The information received is disseminated to responding emergency/non-emergency units (Police, Fire, Emergency Medical Service (EMS)), based on the information received from the public.

Communications personnel receiving calls will attempt to accurately verify the nature of the call to determine what services are needed and whether an emergency or non-emergency response is needed. A code response is assigned, based on an assessment of the information available to the operator. Calls are assigned one of the seven priority code classifications.


The Communications Center is equipped with a Next Generation 911 from an Internet Protocol (IP) based system which provides subscriber name, address, telephone number, etc, and enables a better and quicker response time for responding units. The receiving Telecommunicator verifies all caller information, and updates are completed in the system as they occur and appropriate personnel/apparatus is dispatched accordingly.

Standard Operating Procedures & General Orders