More than 1,000 911 calls received night of West blast

More than 1,000 911 calls received night of West blast

Credit: Erich Schlegel/Getty Images

James McNeely of Texas Task Force One plays the bagpipes in front of the 12 caskets at the West memorial service held at Baylor University April 25, 2013 in Waco,

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Associated Press

Posted on June 17, 2013 at 12:21 PM

WACO, Texas (AP) — Authorities say the 911 center that scrambled emergency response to the fatal fertilizer plant explosion in the town of West received more than 1,000 calls the evening of the blast.

Waco police, whose dispatchers handle emergency calls from nearby West, said Monday that calls the night of April 17 were received between 7:30 p.m. and midnight. The number of 911 calls that night does not include dozens of others phoned into other police and fire lines.

The explosion killed 15 people, most of them first responders, and injured some 200 others.

Dispatchers working the night of the blast were honored Monday at the National Emergency Number Conference in Charlotte, N.C. They're credited with handling frantic radio traffic, coordinating response with the command post in West, and directing numerous agencies that provided assistance.

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