Local dispatchers react to Las Vegas shooting


As the terror unfolded in Las Vegas Sunday night, 911 dispatchers had the difficult job of taking calls from the scene and guiding police and SWAT teams by phone.

In Greenville, dispatchers said their hearts go out to their colleagues out west, and that while it would be incredibly difficult to hear what those Las Vegas dispatchers had to listen to, their training kicks in, no matter what’s going on.

Kathy Opalacz is a Communications Special Supervisor for the Greenville Police Department.

“I just try to rely on the training I’ve gone through and try to remember to maintain calm and try to get to the person through it. There are calls that will always stick with the dispatchers and I’m sure Las Vegas is dealing with a lot of that. I’m sure their dispatchers all heard something over the phone that’s just really heartbreaking to them.”

Opalacz said the Greenville Police Department dispatch center will most likely take a look at what unfolded in Las Vegas, and use it as a teaching tool to make sure they’re ready for a worst case scenario.

“As much as our hearts go out, we also take it from a professional standpoint and we kind of look to see if our agency is prepared for something if something like that happened.”

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