Dayshift update: Nightshift soon

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night-owl-vectorA week to go. The six months of dayshift are winding down, with four shifts left before the “team” I’m on switches to nights. My previous posts have explained how I really don’t like day shifts. The fatigue has diminished as I adjusted to working days after more than 23 years on nights, but it has never gone completely away. Trying to acclimate to a work day starting at 7am has been tough. Now, just as it might be finally happening, I’ll be back on nights.

I quit the melatonin as quickly as I could, as it didn’t seem to help, and gave me “intense” (i.e. weird) dreams. My sleep has become a bit more restful, but combined with 12 hour shifts, I haven’t felt this tired, for this long, in… like ever. It’s a fatigue that just never goes completely away. I’m hoping going back to nights will be a quicker and easier transition.

And guess what? We’re losing several dispatchers in the near future. One has already quit, and others are moving on to other jobs. We’ll be short staffed. Again. That means more overtime will have to be filled (something this new schedule was supposed to cut way down on.), and I’m certain we’ll end up with assigned overtime. The solution to these problems seems simple to me, but the county doesn’t seem to think the center needs more bodies. Please stay on the line, your call will be answered by the next available operator.

So, only a few more days on days. Then 12 hour night shifts. It’s weird. So far, most of my dayshifts have had me going to work in the dark, and then coming home in the dark. Now, I’ll be going to nights, and coming to work in the daylight, working in the dark, and going home in the light. That’s not going to mess with my bio-rhythms, is it?

I used to say I loved my job. I still do, but I no longer look forward to going to work. Hurry up retirement. I’m fading fast.

 

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Want to piss off a dispatcher? Act like you’re the only unit on the radio!

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05162013

We have procedures officers in the field are supposed to follow on the radio.  They are designed to allow the quickest, most efficient transfer of information possible.  It really gums up the works, and creates needless stress, when radio traffic is not conducted according to those procedures.

Last night, the 4th of July, was one of those nights that will have me cursing the name of a particular unit for a long time.  Those in the know will probably figure out who I mean just from their own knowledge of the departments and personel involved, but I’m not going to name names (or unit numbers!) (even though my “about” blurb says the guilty will be hung out to dry!  It is my job, so I have to be minimally diplomatic in this rant.  I may still hear about it from upper echelons).  I’m going to hope it’s simply a training issue, and not a case of “I’m the most important thing on this radio channel, and you better be able to handle what ever I do regardless of how many other things are going on!”.

How can any unit in the field not realize that there are 20-25 units on the same radio channel, it’s a national holiday, it’s hot as hell, and their dispatch center is a small room in the basement of the jail building?  Are you not listening?  You just key up and start talking?  Really?

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TCSO Scanner audio online

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I’m streaming our radio traffic onto the internet.  You can hear the audio by pointing your browser, or Media Player, to mms://kc6yru.net:1199. It’s a stereo feed, with Channel One, the south end of the county, being on the left track.  Channel Two, the north end, is on the right track.  I was having some difficulty with the computer I was originally using, so I’ve moved it to one that should be more stable, and online 24/7.  If you listen closely, and at the right times, you may even hear me!

This feed is not provided by Tulare County Sheriff’s Department, or Tulare County, and they are not responsible for it being online.  The equipment is simply two scanners of mine, feeding into a sound card on a computer running Windows Media Encoder.

UPDATE:  January 9, 2011 – I’m no longer streaming the scanner audio.  The computer I was using decided to start acting up, and I don’t have a reliable replacement for it.  I don’t know if I’ll be putting the feed back up in the future or not.  In the meantime, if you have an iPhone or iPad, you can download 5-0 Radio, or Scanner911 and catch us there.

 

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