Confusion over 911 call cost life of Draper man, family says

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Kent Parker dialed 911 on Jan. 16. Within 40 minutes he was dead and help never came.

Parker’s family believes the two dispatch services in the Salt Lake Valley led to his death.

First there was confusion over the Draper man’s address.  Forty-five seconds passed in silence as Salt Lake dispatchers tried to connect with Valley Emergency Communications, which handles Draper area calls.

In a second 911 call, Parker, 50, told dispatchers he was starting to feel better. His wife later found him dead at their home.

Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams wants all dispatch calls to be on the same computer system to avoid these types of problems and is willing to put money toward that effort.

“We are not here to play the blame game and say it was somebody else’s fault – what’s monumental today is that everybody is at the table to say we are taking responsibility and the future is one where we work together,” McAdams said.

11 comments

  • Pretty Sad :-(

    It sad that This Man Has Passed Away But on the on The Other Hand I do Not See That the 911 Dispatches did any wrong in this call they ask him if he needed help he immediately said no I think it’s calming down she asked again are you sure he says yes I’ll wait a while therefore his fault not none of the dispatchers fault, they Lost connection Probley Because he hanged up his phone they calked him back CLEARLY SHE SAYS 911 WE RECEIVED CALL FROM THIS NUMBER IS THERE AN ENERGENCY HE CLEARLEY STATES EVERTHING OK THE 3 time he CALLS BACK AND THE SAME THING I THINK IM OK DO DISPATCH ARE YOU SURE YOU’RE FINE KENT YES DISPATCHER ARE YOU SURE YOU WANT ME TO CANCEL KENT YES I’LL BE OKAY THANK YOU. NOW HOW ARE THE DISPATCHES ATFAULT? I’m Lost For Words he was a Great Man With a Big heart That Would Help This community in any way he could and well at his restaurant He Would Make Sure Servive And Food Was Great!!! Our 911 Dispatches get no credit for what they go through unlike are men and women in uniform or are fire department so THIS SHOULD BE A CASE OF SENDING HELP OUT EITHER WAY EVEN IF ONE SAY THEY ARE OK. May GOD BLESS YOU ALL!!!

  • Cassie

    It’s not really about who is at fault, it’s more about the issues of jurisdiction and the right people not receiving the call.

  • sheryl

    BY LAW EVERY 911 CALL IS SUPPOSE TO BE RESOPNED TO EVEN IF IT IS SOMEONE IS PRANK CALLING AND KENT WAS NOT!!!
    SO YOU REMEMBER THAT WHEN YOU KISS YOUR CHILDREN OR YOUR SPOUSE TONIGHT. KENTS NOT COMING BACK AND THERE IS NO EXCUSE FOR THEM TO HANG UP ON HIM AND BY LAW THE DISPATCHER SHOULD HAVE SENT THE AMBLANCE. THE DISPATCHER KNEW KENT NEEDED NEED TO BE SEEN AT A HOSPITAL AFTER HE TOLD HER HE THOGHT HE WAS HAVING A HEART ATTACK!!!!

  • Stefanie

    This is really tragic. My heart goes out to his family. What I don’t get is why there was no one ever sent. Other states I have lived in require that at least a police officer be sent to any 911 call, even if the caller changes their mind and says no help is needed. Chest pains are nothing to take lightly, and you could hear the distress in his voice during that first recording. Yes, the caller on the second call said he was doing better, but if help at been sent and not cancelled from the first call, he might still be alive today.

  • Nathan B

    This is a SAD and TRAGIC story. What bothers me is the fact that we have 2 facilities that handle 911 call, with 2 different computer systems. Why the need for 2 centers to handle 911 calls and different computer systems. It sounds like there needs to be a serious upgrade on the system. One Centrally located facility in the Valley and only 1 computer system to handle all 911 calls, so things like this don’t happen.

  • Jenn

    So sad to hear this. Praying for his family. I called 911 from Herriman in July of 2012 and the dispatcher lady was extremely rude to me. She gave the paramedics the wrong address and they took 25 min to get to my house when I could have spit to the fire station. I contacted the Mayor and hoped something would change. Thank God my baby boy didn’t die that day, he had a seizure and was completely unresponsive.

  • Steph

    I CANNOT believe the way these calls were handled!! just the fact of How the dispatcher kept asking him to hold on, then apparently the call was lost at sometime after Kent was repeatedly asking are you there? THEN for him to have to call back and go through all the hassle he just did with the first call, there should have been no hesitation to send an ambulance his way because Kent is not a Dr and a dispatcher should know this!! Regardless if a patient is “feeling better” after having enough chest pain to call in the first place should have been reason to send someone to check on him!!!…He was the kindest man and this is a humongous tragedy!!

  • Trish Campbell

    Confusion can be a symptom of a heart attack. Maybe he thought he felt better. Heart attack pain can come and go, and many times men will try to act as if they are fine. This is very sad. If he had enough pain to call the first time, then they should have sent someone.

    These dispatchers need better training. If they had been able to recognize that he really needed help they would have been able to make sure it happened. 911 is always suppose to stay on the phone with you until help arrives.

  • NYDB

    BOTTOM LINE PEOPLE…KENT NEEDED HELP & DID NOT RECEIVE IT. ANY CALL WITH COMPLAINTS OF THE HEART SHOULD NOT BE TAKEN LIGHTLY, IN FACT, IT SHOULD BE POLICY EVERYWHERE TO STILL CHECK ON THE PERSON EVEN IF THEY “THINK” THEY’RE OK, RATHER THAN DECIDING THEIR FATE!!!!

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