Tollway Dispatch Center training program recognized for excellence


The Illinois Tollway has been recognized as having one of the best training programs in the country for the telecommunications dispatchers who handle calls for roadside assistance and emergency situations on the 294-mile Tollway system.

The Tollway has become only the 6th public safety agency in Illinois — and the first operating an Illinois State Police district dispatch center--to have its training program certified by the Association of Public Safety Communications Officials (APCO). 

Nationally, fewer than 1 percent of the nearly 9,000 public safety answering points have achieved this honor.

Tollway Dispatch acts as the 911 center for all roadway emergencies on the system. Last year the center processed about 192,000 incidents — mostly from drivers reporting crashes, state troopers conducting law enforcement activities and customers seeking roadside assistance. 

Public safety agencies like the Tollway use the certification process as a mechanism to ensure their training programs meet APCO’s American National Standards.

Comprehensive training for public safety telecommunicators is vital because they provide essential services to the public — often in emergency circumstances.

The training also is another way of ensuring customers rapidly receive the assistance they are seeking when they contact the Tollway.