911 dispatchers what has been your most creepy/unnerving call?

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I had a friend who worked as a 911 dispatcher and he always said the worst call he ever had was a ~20 year old kid who committed suicide by mixing a bunch of chemicals together in his car to produce hydrogen sulfide gas. He said that the most unnerving part was hearing him calmly listing off the chemicals, the type of gas produced, and the effects of hydrogen sulfide on the body (namely the almost instant death it causes at high concentrations). He ended the call by providing the address of the parking lot he was in and saying that nobody should approach the vehicle without hazmat equipment. Apparently after that there was a whooshing sound as he dumped the last chemical into the mix, and then the line went dead silent aside for a quiet fizzing noise. I know that call screwed him up because he almost never talks about stuff that happens to him on the job. He quit a few months later to go into construction management, and frankly I can’t blame him.


When I was 9 my mom died. My brother (10.5) and I were home alone with her. Our dad had died 3 years earlier. She had a massive heart attack. My brother called 911 and they walked us through getting her off the bed and onto the floor so that my brother could attempt CPR. When he was ready, he gave me the phone (on speaker), and told me to turn around and face the wall so I didn’t have to watch. I vividly remember sobbing to the dispatcher: PLEASE YOU DON’T UNDERSTAND, THIS IS MY LAST PARENT! YOU HAVE TO DO SOMETHING! The dispatcher attended my mother’s funeral and left the field right after. My brother is a trauma surgeon. I’m in nursing school. Very cataclysmic situation for all involved.


Suicide or homicide calls always get my hair standing on end. I’ve taken a few of both. It’s always eerie how callers start off relatively calm then you notice them get more and more emotional and hysterical as the weight of what they’ve just witnessed sets in. I have taken calls from parents screaming at their dead child and sobbing asking why they did it. It’s a creepy feeling knowing that they’re standing there screaming at a dead body that’s in God knows what kind of condition.


I’ve talked to people were dying and people who had just watched their loved ones die in violent ways, but the ones that get me are the ones that could have been stopped. A guy who didn’t report a domestic in a high rise for 60 minutes until he saw a girl hurtle past his window on the way to the ground below. A woman whose son said he was going to jump off a bridge. She drove to the bridge she thought he’d go to, and sure enough there he was. She didn’t want to block traffic so she drove to the other side to pull over. He jumped before she could run back. Honestly the call that caused me the absolute most grief was simply an elderly man who woke up to find his wife deceased next to him, having died in her sleep overnight. I’ll never forget the pain in his voice. It’s weird because there wasn’t any crime, any violence, any victim really. He just clearly really loved her and wasn’t ready for her to go. I choke up a little thinking about it years later.


a woman called in once, saying she had already swallowed a massive amount of pills (later found it was over 100 oxycodone, about 40 xanax, and a mix of about 20 other pills) and was okay with dying. she told me not to send any help, and that she was fine. just wanted someone to talk to her until she passed. she then stated if i sent any people, and if she heard any sirens or knocks on her door, she would light herself on fire as she had already doused herself in lighter fluid. at my job, there is no choice to “not send help.” i have to enter a call. so i did. how the field handles it themselves, given the information i’ve provided, is up to them. as units were heading there i was speaking to her, listening to her continuously flicking her lighter knowing at any moment she could set herself ablaze. after about 4 minutes, which felt like an eternity, she asks if i sent people to her. to which i replied that she had called 911 and 911 was there to help her. i didn’t want her to harm herself, i cared about her, and she could get the help she needed. she then asked again, “did you send people here?” i froze, not knowing what to say. then, after a few seconds of silence. she eerily chuckled, said “i knew you would. and that’s okay. i forgive you. please forgive me.” then proceeded to set herself on fire. i listened to her blood curdling screams as she burned. i still hear that lighter flicking sometimes. i can still hear her chuckle. i still hear her burning screams.