DISPATCHER WEEK: Hardy works hard to help others at E-911

Published 8:30 am Wednesday, April 17, 2024

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EDITOR’S NOTE: In recognition of National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week, the Daily News will be highlighting some of the dispatchers at Troup County 911 who are the first, first response when emergency help is needed. Today we are featuring veteran Dispatcher Nina Hardy.

Nina Hardy has been with Troup 911 for 15 years. The veteran dispatcher is one of the agency’s lead dispatch officers and helps train incoming dispatchers.

More than a decade in, Hardy says she still enjoys the job because she likes helping and getting people the help they need. She said the most rewarding part is knowing you helped save a life.

“When I take the call and I have to [teach them to] do CPR and I know they make it, that’s my favorite part,” she said, explaining that they occasionally have to walk callers through doing CPR over the phone.

“Thankfully, it doesn’t happen a lot,” she said.

Hardy said a lot of their calls don’t end so happily, especially auto accidents. She said this past weekend was one of the rough ones.

“Crazy weekends like this past weekend how everybody’s talking about all the deaths and everything with people wrecking and dying. I don’t like bad wrecks. Those bother me,” Hardy said.

Hardy said the work hours and long shifts aren’t exactly easy either, especially with E-911 having to be available 24-7.

“I’ve gotten used to it,” Hardy said. “We do 12-hour shifts. Sometimes we have got to do 16. I tell people that’s like working two days in one day.”

Fortunately, Hardy gets to work day shifts these days.

“I was actually on night shift for nine years. Then I swapped to day shift and I’ve been on days ever since,” she said.

All dispatchers end up hearing things that can be emotionally upsetting, but Hardy said it’s important to not take that home.

“I try not to take things home. Every day when I come home my husband asks me, how’s your day? Sometimes I’ll talk to him about it and sometimes I just don’t want to talk about it. I just leave it there. Work is work. Home is home. I try very hard to not take it home with me,” Hardy said.