City tracks where cops are dispatched the fastest

A police vehicle in Flatiron, which is part of the 13th Precinct, where there’s an average dispatch time of 3.42 minutes (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

By Sabina Mollot

How long it takes for the police to come to your rescue after you dial 9-1-1 depends on the neighborhood you live in.

The average, citywide, in 2018, was 3.8 minutes. That year, the lowest response time was 1.6 minutes in the Rockaways and the highest was 8.0 minutes in The Bronx’s Wakefield/Woodlawn neighborhoods. The Bronx had much higher dispatch times than the other boroughs, with the average wait time of 5.6 minutes — nearly two minutes higher than the rest of the city.

The stats were released by the city’s Independent Budget Office on May 9, using information from the Mayor’s Office of Management Budget, Fiscal Year 2018 District Resource Statement for the New York Police Department.

The IBO noted, however, that despite being required by a 1991 law, the city does not publish data by precinct that tells New Yorkers how long it takes the police department to respond to a 911 call — from the initial call to the time officers arrive at the scene. What information is available on the precinct level is dispatch time, which is the minutes and seconds it takes for a police dispatcher to find and assign officers to respond to a possible crime in progress.

The data also shows that Manhattan’s 13th Precinct, which covers Stuyvesant Town/Peter Cooper Village, Flatiron, Gramercy and Kips Bay as well as Chelsea as far west as Seventh Avenue, has average dispatch times of 3.42 minutes. The 9th Precinct, which covers the East Village and Alphabet City, has an average dispatch time of 2.30 minutes. The 17th Precinct, which covers Murray Hill and East Midtown, has an average of 3.88 minutes.

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