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Interpreting The Front Lines

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(Claude Monet)

Nataly Kelly speaks more languages than most people have ever heard, she also writes about translation, teaches interpretation and works for an interpretation company. But before all of that, she had a job that dropped her right in the middle of the most dramatic moment of a total stranger’s life.

Comments [3]

Max from Northern NJ

Also, Maria, emergency call centers use "Caller ID" to locate the source of 911 calls. I once accidentally hit the speed dial 911 button on my home phone and immediately hung up; three minutes later, a police officer rang my front doorbell asking if there was a problem and if I needed assistance.

Nov. 24 2014 08:28 AM
Max from Northern NJ

Maria, very nearly always, the second question asked on a 911 call is the caller's location (the first is, typically, "What is the nature of your emergency?"). Once the location has been established, help is dispatched. Then it is the 911 operator's responsibility to calm and manage the situation as well as can be expected over the telephone line until the help arrives at the scene.

I strongly suspect that, in this case, the operator had already established the caller's location and dispatched the police, then hit the translator request button to help the caller in any way possible.

Nov. 21 2014 11:54 AM
Maria Blume from Lima, Peru

I don't understand why the 911 call went that way. If they get a call saying "He's going to kill me. He is in the house" shouldn't they get the address and send help before asking whether the poor woman was under the bed and all those other details?

I found strange that you didn't comment on that.

Nov. 09 2014 11:18 AM

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