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Response times slowing slightly for Burbank PD

Ryan Carter

While local police got to emergency calls faster last year, their

overall response times were slower than the year before.

In 2002, it took an average of 14 minutes and 27 seconds for

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officers to respond to calls within the department’s nine levels of

priority and non-urgent categories. In 2001, the average was 14

minutes and 15 seconds.

Burbank Police records show officers responded to 50,972 calls

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last year.

The department divides responses into three kinds of high-priority

calls, and into six others that are less urgent. The top three types

of calls include life-threatening ones, violent felonies in progress

and those that just occurred.

Police responded to high-priority calls in an average of 3 minutes

and 20 seconds in 2002, Deputy Chief Larry Koch said. In 2001, police

responded in 3 minutes and 23 seconds. The previous year, emergency

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response took 3 minutes and 19 seconds.

“We’re generally around or just under 3 minutes and 20 sec- onds,”

Koch said. “We feel it’s very good.”

Response times are measured from the moment a call is received by

the department’s communications center to the time officers arrive at

the scene. Koch, who was captain of the patrol division before

becoming deputy chief , said response times are a key measurement of

the department’s health.

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“It’s one of the report cards of police work,” he said. “They are

barometers on how we’re doing our jobs because we have more control

over that than we do over the crime rate.”

Earlier this year, the department was struggling with reduced

staffing levels and had to pull officers from the mall detail to

maintain minimum levels in patrol. But that had a minor effect, if

any at all, on response times, Koch said.

In contrast, Los Angeles Police Department response times are

considerably higher, albeit in a larger and more populous city with

stretched patrol squads.

Police response times in the city of Los Angeles hover around 10

minutes. Glendale Police were still working earlier this week to

compile their 2002 data on response times.


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