CAPE ELIZABETH — All non-emergency calls to the public safety departments are now being answered by an automated system.
The change follows the dispatch center’s consolidation with Portland and South Portland, which began this week.
Emergency calls are being answered by dispatchers at Portland’s center, without any direction through the automated system.
A letter from police Chief Neil Williams was sent to all residents explaining the dispatch change, which went into effect Monday, June 29. The non-emergency number is 767-3323; the emergency number is always 911.
Non-emergency calls will be forwarded to the public safety clerk, who is on duty at the police station from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. every day, or to the Portland dispatch center. Anyone coming to the station after 4 p.m. will have access to a telephone in the vestibule, which connects directly to a Portland dispatcher.
According to Williams’ letter, Police Department and Fire Department response to calls will not change. “Should our assistance be needed these departments will be there for you,” the chief said.
What has changed is the way non-emergency safety-related questions are answered. Those calls were previously answered by a staff of four Cape Elizabeth dispatchers. Williams directed residents to the automated system or the town’s automated information line (767-2273) instead.
He said questions regarding dispatch services or consolidation can be directed to him at email@example.com or 767-3323 ext. 223.
Sarah Trent can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 108 or firstname.lastname@example.org.