Working as a 911 dispatcher means having a steady head on your shoulders at all times.
At any moment someone could call with their life on the line, hanging on to every word you say. Fortunately, most calls are handled with a calm demeanor.
Then there are those calls haunting you, leaving you with nightmares to discuss for years to come.
Reddit user, AdmireFire1__, wanted to know:
911 Operators of reddit, what's the scariest/ most disturbing situation ever described to you while on call?
"Got what I thought was a silent 911 from a cell phone."
"We get silent calls all the time."
"Usually I give it about 10-15 seconds before hanging up and calling back."
"This time we were really busy, so I let it go a few more seconds while trying to drink my coffee."
"About 45 seconds into the call I heard someone whisper please."
"So I end up turning my volume to max and hearing a woman whispering that she was kidnapped, and in the trunk of a car."
"I talked her through how to find and use the latch in the back to open the trunk, and the entire time I was tracking her location through a new location clearinghouse called Rapid SOS."
"The guy stopped at a red light and I told her if it stops that she should run as fast as she can and get to help."
"She was in the city, I had a pretty good idea where she was and had cops almost on scene."
"She ran into a gas station, gave her phone to the guy working there, I got the address and had cops there in about 30 seconds."
"Dude was pulled over about half a mile down the road and arrested."- FTM_PTB
Reacting In The Process Of Happening
"My wife is a former dispatcher she had one silent call that turned nasty."
"Often its butt dialing or a kid fooling around."
"So they would send an officer to check."
"In this though the residence had a current restraining order on the BF."
"So she alerts a car who books it over there lights no sirens."-
"Seconds before the cop gets there all hell broke loose over the phone."
"Screaming, 'HELP ME', thuds, yelling."
"She alerts the cop who skids to a stop in front of the door, sprints through the closed and locked door and football tackles a guy in the process of beating his GF to death."
Witness To One
"I had gotten a tour of the emergency response center when I was in the cub scouts."
"They had a call come in and told us to watch what they do."
"The person wanted to report a dead body gave the location."
"They said reporting a dead body by a taxi at the convince store."
"It's a suicide."
"The operator asked how sure he was it was a suicide the caller said it hasn't happened yet."
"He was the one."
"The operator told him help is on the way."
"We heard a gun go off over the phone."
"The operator kept asking him what happened."
"Another man voice came on it was an officer asking if it was the dispatch."
"The person was dead and his phone call was still active."
"We heard another officer talking in the background."
"Everyone started stood there in shock and some people cried or screamed."
"We were escorted out and many people wound up quitting after it."
"I was too shocked to know what to say."- Kookabob
Trouble Finding The Words
"A friend answered a call about a cyclist being hit by a truck."
"Except they weren't technically hit."
"The truck clipped the cyclist who was actually standing on the corner waiting to cross the road, and had their bike wheel sticking a bit too far over the curb."
"When the truck clipped the wheel it basically sucked the whole bike and the woman on it around and between the wheels of the truck."
"The man who called it in was a pedestrian who struggled to explain this woman was basically swallowed by this truck and just disappeared."
"He couldn't see where she went and when the truck kept on going he realized she was somehow caught in the truck and was dragged a block or two."
"Thankfully there was traffic so he was able to catch up to the truck after chasing it down, because the truck driver never realized what had happened."
"Needless to say, it was difficult for the man to explain how this all unfolded."
"My friend said this man had trouble finding the words but would answer yes/no questions."
"He was obviously replaying the moment over in his mind but couldn't paint the picture by explaining."- definitelymy1account
People Explain Which Conspiracy Theories They Believe Are 100% True | George Takei’s Oh Myyy
You See Yourself In The Victim
"My best mate/housemate at the time is a dispatcher for the ambulance."
"She's a pretty stoic person and not much bothers her, but not long after she had her son, she took a call from a woman who had spilled hot oil on her two year old."
"She said the combination of the mother's hysteria, the child's screams, and the hormones from recently having a baby just really messed with her."
"She ended up taking the rest of the shift off."
"She had so many other calls that floored me, whereas she was just like 'meh, a day in the life'.- rhllordemort
"My friend is a police dispatcher, and she once got a call of a situation of mass hysteria."
"She said she heard screaming and dull thuds."
"Apparently the person on the phone was a party guest hiding in a closet."
"A drunk guy at the party had snapped and started beating people to death with a chair."
"Two people died and a third was injured."
"She called multiple units over and they restrained the guy."
"Super scary."- i-just-draw-dragons
Just A List Of Awful
"February will be 5 years."
"Scariest/disturbing, can't really answer that."
"I work hard on leaving work at work."
"But a few things stick out."
"Sounds like snoring, but to me it's the sound of death."
"CPR calls are never easy and maybe half of your callers are in the head space to do CPR on a love one that is dying in front of them."
"On the phone with a lady telling me her husband has been seeing a therapist for depression."
"She spends a lot of time, a lot of time in our world is a matter of seconds, giving me these 'unnecessary' details and final days he has a gun."
"And the next thing is her blood curdling scream because he just shot himself."
"When there is a true emergency happening aside from sending help."
"You're waiting and fairly helpless."- MiahWitt60
You Hear It All
"Listened to a young girl choking and a guy screaming religious stuff at her."
"She was murdered.."
"I listened to the whole thing."
" Still haunts me a decade later."- BlackIsTheSoul
Enough To Quit
"I had a co worker that worked for dispatch."
"She told me she had gotten a call from an elderly man and he said he had just beat his wife to death with a baseball bat."
"He was still on the line with dispatch when she heard a woman screaming for help in the background."
"The man told her to hang on as he placed the phone down."
"Then she heard a dull thud noise as he struck his wife again and she stopped screaming."
"He picked up the phone again and told her he was sure his wife was dead this time."
"Hearing a murder and not being able to do anything to stop it was too much for her."
"She left that line of work."- thatstaceygirl
A Family thing
"3rd had story here."
"So a fellow got called about a baby choking."
"Turns out it his wife."
"So he calmly and accurately tols her how to treat the baby."
"Then when he hangs up (obviously) he runs home, to find his kid alive."- TheBlackestKey
Though it isn't always gloom and doom, every now and then dispatchers might get a call which they laugh about down the line.
Too hot to handle
"Yo, I burnt my mouth on pizza."- Noobmaster6ix9ine_
No one is immune from scams
"Tech support telling me i got hacked and needed to pay them to fix it."- Quinten1401
It's like they're talking out of their butts...
"Ambulance dispatcher here."
"So. Much. Butt. Stuff."
"Probably my favorite funny call was at about 4.30am one morning, we’re all tired, near the end of a 12 hour shift."
"A call drops in from a young man who is really panicked."
"There are some calls that just make you sit up in your seat at the start, you get a feeling like oh shit, someone’s not breathing."
"This was one of them, just from his tone and how scared he was."
"Anyway I proceed with the usual, ask him exactly what has happened."
"He’s just saying Over and over 'my balls are gone, my balls are gone!'"
"Now I’m trying to figure out the MOI, like how did this happen?"
"Are they amputated?"
"Is there serious bleeding?"
"He’d been having a nice little morning wank and his balls had sucked themselves back up into his body, which I guess he had never experienced before."
"I will never forget his wail of 'my balls are just skiiiiiiin'."
"Any time I get a shitty call I think of that fella."
"They ended up popping back out before the call ended and Ambulance wasn’t required."- awhimbahweh
Better left to the professionals
"Not an operator but my brother had to call because we got a spring stuck on my tongue."
"They thought it was a prank call and sent a bunch of officers down to our house."
"My brother told the operator 'WHATEVER YOU DO, DO NOT LET ANYONE LAUGH WHEN THEY GET HERE....PLEASE I BEG YOU'."
"What did they do?"
"Couldn't contain their laughter and one officer was rolling around the living room floor holding his belly and I'm almost certain he had moments where he forgot how to breathe."
"I was 8 and my brother was babysitting me and asked me if I wanted my tongue pierced."
"Of course being the stupid child I was, I said yes and he put this spring on my tongue."
"It got stuck and my tongue swelled way too fast to be able to twist it off and pulling it apart was not an option because it would just get tighter."
"My tongue turned black and went numb."
"After about a half hour, he called and requested help."
"Dude, the fire department almost gave up and was ready to transport me to the emergency room because they were certain I needed it surgically removed."
"They couldn't stop laughing either, the officers were still laughing but FINALLY they got it off. "
"My parents were NOT happy."
"Also, to this day, I refuse to get my tongue pierced."- babyaccount24
Some would consider this an emergency.
"Had a guy call us on 911 from the bathroom stall of Burger King because he was on the toilet and there was no toilet paper."
"My co-worker got this call and actually called the manager at BK and asked them to bring the guy some TP."
"He’s lucky he didn’t get me, I wouldn’t have been as nice!"- Shawver83·
"Currently a 911 operator."
"I took a call a few years ago about a man requesting an ambulance."
"He was calling from a payphone and said that his penis was in pain, so, naturally I asked why it was in pain."
"He says that him and his wife were having sex and she put his penis inside of a coke bottle and it got stuck in there."
"THANK GOD for a mute button."
"He got his ambulance, I got a great laugh."- que_quieres
Disappointing Celebrity Encounnter
"Not me, but my wife."
"Her funniest call started, 'I just got beat by Peewee f*cking Herman'."
"He did too, smacked in the face with a cellphone."- EQandCivfanatic
These calls are harrowing. Thanks to all of our first responders.
Do you have similar stories? Share them in the comment section below!
If you or someone you know is struggling, you can contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).To find help outside the United States, the International Association for Suicide Prevention has resources available at https://www.iasp.info/resources/Crisis_Centres/
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Oh, the beginning of the interwebs.
Those were the days.
We definitely did not see what was to come.
Maybe it should've stayed simple.
We'll never know.
Computers rule the world now.
Let's see where we are in another twenty years.
RedditorEzucraAaAa wanted to wax nostalgic about the good old days of technology and its humble beginnings.
"Redditors, what's something the internet was crazy about but is now forgotten?"
I miss the simplicity of not having a thousand apps. I'm simple.
Ah Memories...the messengers aol GIFGiphy
"Search engines before Google existed. Alta Vista, Lycos, Web Crawler..."
"Downloading custom cursors for your computer. I gave my family computer so many viruses back in the '00s trying to click things with a lightsaber."
"Amazing. I had totally forgotten about all the virusy stuff I downloaded to my home computer, purely so the cursor would disappear and reappear. My parents had zero knowhow with computers either, so likely had no idea wtf I was downloading. Cursors were cool though, despite all the malware."
"During the early days of the web, when most websites weren't plastered with advertising... Website view counters."
"Back in the day of counters, one day I went to my website and the counter was in the thousands. I just thought it malfunctioned and ignored it. Years later I learned that my website, which had a MIDI collection, was published in a newspaper in another country. I couldn't say for sure if that was true and whether it aligned with the counter change."
"Yea the internet was simpler too, layout style I mean. I like old style HTML webpage layouts. I personally don’t like hyper modern logos and designs on interfaces. Something about old slightly pixelated designs about them home screens and app logos really made them satisfying. I’ve even went as far as seeing if I could install some extensions that could change the layout of sites, make them feel older, give them that 2000’s html look."
Found ItLooking The Loud House GIF by NickelodeonGiphy
"I used to waste so much time with stumble upon."
What a strange and crazy place the internet was.
notificationBaby Love GIF by LINE FRIENDSGiphy
"Poking on Facebook."
"I had a friend that poked me and I never noticed the notification. He died. I now have this unreturned poke as a reminder that I’ll never be able to poke them back."
"Many flash games are not dead. BEHOLD! The flashpoint project. They have saved thousands of the old flash games in a playable format. Go forth and relive your childhood Also paging u/The_Middler_is_Here"
I will find you...
"There was a rhythm game that I don't remember the name of that me and some friends would challenge each other in, and it had the song Guitar vs Piano 2 which introduced me to Envy, who was a pretty big newgrounds artist at the time. I wanna go check out their stuff again now, I'd completely forgot about them till now."
"Forums. There used to be so many, incredibly active and dedicated forums."
"A lot of the forums I visited were ruined by photobucket when they decided they wanted paid a lot of money from their users. So many build threads and tutorials ruined."
"IMDb had the best message boards back in the day. Chatting with your internet friends around the globe about every nuance in your fave movie. Man I miss that. Reddit is close, but nothing beats the olden days."
FunEgg Hatch GIF by The Roku ChannelGiphy
"Do you guys remember those egg things that hatched little creatures after a while? You'd put one on your website and then the artist would update the source url with images of it hatching? There were all kinds of little fun things like that."
Those were the days!
Do you have something you'd like to share? Let us know in the comments below.
Not all television and movies are loved by all.
A story and its characters have to appeal to you in order for you to be engaged.
It can take next to nothing for us to lose interest and let the screen go black.
Redditor BarooTangClan wanted to compare notes on all the entertainment we've said "that's enough" to.
"What will make you instantly stop watching a movie or show and why?"
I hate bad acting, writing, storytelling... I hate bad anything.
Stop JumpingFight Scene GIF by Operation FortuneGiphy
"Fight scenes with a million visual cuts. Gives me motion sickness. Contrast the absolutely masterful work in John Wick. long cuts, realistic use of weapons (mostly), 100% skill."
"When the actors whisper the whole movie and you have to crank the volume to hear what's being said - but the soundtrack or some other misc noise starts blaring at a higher volume directly after."
"I basically had to watch Stranger Things up in my attic with the windows and doors closed. I was worried the neighbors would think something was wrong or be annoyed if I watched it downstairs in my single family home. It was ridiculous."
"spice things up"
"Love triangles out of no where in a second or third season to 'spice things up' because studio writers are hacks and their idea of relationship drama is 'potential infidelity' at all times. It's the most tired trope on the go**amn planet and the second I see it rear its head I dip right the hell out."
"The whole concept of a love triangle to begin with an incredibly juvenile. Any healthy functioning adult who found themselves in a love triangle would soon choose to find themselves single."
Save your lips...
"When couples in a movie/show have a fight and one of them instantly goes to a friend and end up kissing her/him after talking for 5 minutes. I cringe so hard i turn it off and never watch it again."
"This pissed me off so much in Manifest. Girl is desperate to get back her ex-fiancé, he finally breaks up with his wife to get back with her and she's like 'nah, it's not fair to your wife, let me do this other dude I just met through a calling and be pissed at you for being jealous.' Michaela was the worst and everyone acted as if she were a saint the entire time."
Talk to MeIn Love Flirt GIF by OriginalsGiphy
"Shows where a single polite conversation could fix everything."
We are going overboard with the witty repartee. Talk normal...
Shut UpScared Home Alone GIF by FreeformGiphy
"Annoying main character, especially if it's a kid."
"Kids who have a quippy, sassy retort to everything, and everyone just kind of crumbles before their wit."
"Shows where kids in high school talk like they are 30 years olds who have done everything, been everywhere, know it all and use a ridiculously flowery and extensive vocabulary in every conversation. Like, have any of these writers ever been to high school? Literally no one talks like that. Even worse is when, in addition to this, all the adults talk normal or are just plain stupid, like so weird parallel universe."
"If the movie is too dark. Not graphic, just literally dark. I lose all sense of intensity in dark scenes and I'm not straining my damn eyes trying to figure out what the hell is going on."
"I've seen about 10 percent of all DC movies recently. I've seen all of the individual films in full, just actually saw 10% of each of them."
"Movies in the late 80s had a lot of dark but you could see the depth because of different shooting techniques. Now you cant see crap because its a CGI fest drowned in black color so you can't see crap because you have no depth in a scene. Compare night scenes in dark alleys in 80's movies and movies now. Utter crap show in the new ones."
Pay Attention Storytellers
"Bad editing would be a big one. A lot of modern horror movies can't help but edit the movies like they're trailers, with added noises to scare the audience because they are afraid the script alone isn't enough to keep people watching."
"I remember this is where the first transformers movie lost me. When the transformers are fighting at the end, it's all a big, jumbled mess of metal and I can barely tell what's going on or who is who."
Dramawill devry soap opera GIF by General HospitalGiphy
"When they go straight to relationship drama right away when it wasn't the selling point of the show."
Do better, Hollywood. It's not that hard.
I fear death.
I wake up in cold sweats dreaming about it.
I think about it in my waking hours.
It's an obsession and clearly, I'm not alone.
But there are more preferred ways to exit.
All we can do is hope to be lucky enough to skip the mercilessly awful.
Please just let me go quick and in my sleep.
RedditorCallMehRiverwanted to hear about all the ways none of us what to leave this life.
"What Do You Think Would Be The Worst Death Imaginable?"
My list of the worst deaths is long. My imagination runs amok.
Trappedseason 6 friends GIFGiphy
"For me? Being trapped in a small tube or cave (like the ones you have to wiggle through) and getting stuck to where you can’t move your arms. And all you can do is wait to die. I’m getting chills just thinking about it."
"The more I hear about cavers that get stuck, the more I think that's a crap way to go."
"There’s a great YouTube channel called Ask a Mortician and this was her #1 worse way to die. I can’t remember the exact details or their names, but two well-known divers went into an underwater cave."
"One of them became entangled and died. Years later, his friend dives back down there to try and retrieve his body, the body itself is rotten and his head comes off and the other guy also becomes tangled and dies. Really sad."
A Long Process
"Believed to be in a coma but coherent through the whole 20 year process until they pull the plug."
"Oh man this just reminded me of a story I read on here about a guy who lost the ability to move and speak but was completely conscious. Had to just lay there and be awake but trapped in a useless body. His family thought he was brain dead or something and he couldn’t communicate to them that he was 'all there.' Crazy"
Slow & Steady
"Being slowly impaled by a growing bamboo. It was a form of torture probably used by the japanese during WW2 against Allied prisoners."
"The scariest part is that once you have symptoms, you 100% will die. A 100% mortality rate has to be a psychological torture in itself."
"Not only that, you feel irrational fear. Your brain is literally being eaten apart by the virus and it fu*ks up everything on it. You can't drink water because it hurts you. You feel dizzy, present a fever, excessively salivate, everything hurts and it only gets worse. I'd rather take a bullet and die when the symptoms are still tolerable."
Why can't we all just go engulfed in calm and quiet?
"Some pulpy sci-fi book I read a while back had one of the best deaths of this real piece of crap bad guy. Left to die in a drowning sea lab under the Antarctic ice, he freezes himself in a state of the art suspended animation pod with some kind cold fusion power source that would keep it running for millions of years."
"But he forgot to inject himself with the drug that would put him to sleep. So basically he is in suspended animation at the bottom of the Antarctic ocean while his mind is perfectly awake and conscious in a near unbreakable machine that won't run out of power for millions of years and nobody knows about it."
"As an RN I have always thought that the worst way to die (natural process) is ALS. Lou Gehrig's Disease."
"My mom and grandmother have Huntington's disease, which is essentially ALS, Alzheimer's, and Dementia combined into one really messed up genetic disease. I have a 50% chance of inheriting it and if I hit 40 and there's still no cure I can't promise I'll feel like continuing on with my life because that disease is absolutely freaking miserable."
"The fact your chromosomes can be so destroyed your body basically lost it's genetic code and with it the ability to make any new cells. It's literally a 'dead man walking' and you slowly rot away in agony. Stuff is so unimaginably f**ked up."
"What's also bad about radiation is that it affects your nerves and brain cells last, so you have everything in place to feel all the pain of the rest of your cells being destroyed."
GooNot Listening Season 2 GIF by The Fresh Prince of Bel-AirGiphy
"I want to believe anything that slowly kills you painfully to be the worst. Such as slowly being crushed or something where the pain is beyond compare and yet not enough to throw you into shock or unconsciousness."
"Alternatively, being rapidly crushed into goo would probably be the least painful. I'm talking one of those massive industrial hammers they use for large steel work. Basically smooshed before the nerve signals make it to the brain."
Now I'll never sleep again without nightmares of death.
If you or someone you know is struggling, you can contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
To find help outside the United States, the International Association for Suicide Prevention has resources available at https://www.iasp.info/resources/Crisis_Centres/
Most Americans think nothing of their humdrum daily activities or amenities available to them.
However, others with a different perspective might romanticize the things that are otherwise commonplace ideas and concepts for US citizens, like going to a diner or riding the school bus.
One Redditor looked to foreigners to hear of their American desires to respond to the following:
"Non-Americans of Reddit: what is an American thing you have always wanted to try?"
The things depicted in film really captivated foreign audiences.
"To visit a diner like in the movies. In the middle of the night, it’s raining and just a few people there with great music from a jukebox."
Iconic Student Transport
"Ride a yellow school bus even if I'm too old. Growing up I always loved seeing them on TV."
Just Like The Ones We Used To Know
"A white Christmas."
"Living in an Australian state where I've never even seen snow in our winter, let alone experiencing that classic Hallmark movie moment of waking up to a street full of it and sitting around a fireplace while opening gifts/preparing a feast."
"Guess it's not strictly American, but the imagery and trope is something I've only really seen from American Films."
They may be ubiquitous for us, but they sure seem to be novel ideas to foreigners.
Let's Be Frank
"One of the hotdogs from those little street cart things."
"A friend of mine from Indonesia said, 'the food chewer in the sink.'"
"Apple Pie made by white-haired grandma, placed near window, who says 'oh dear...' as I levitate towards it."
"Proper tailgating before a ball game, the kind where there's ribs and stuff."
"Deep fried foods at a state fair. I'm from Scotland and we love to deep fry everything and I wanna know if it's just as good or better."
There are places to see!
Places To See
"America’s greatest invention!"
Backpacking In Nature
"I always wanted to hike The Appalachian Trail if that counts. Or see Yellowstone."
"Being able to start a whole new life 'elsewhere' without having to leave my country and going through an arduous immigration process."
My cousin told me she looks forward to visiting a Trader Joe's someday when she visits America for the first time.
Her bucket list option was hardly surprising. My parents used to bring treats from TJs as a novelty souvenir gift item, and my relatives ate it up. Literally.
Let's face it. The snacks at TJs rocks.
Even store locations in New York City would have ridiculously long lines during busy hours because the West-coast-based grocer was a novelty on the East Coast.