Data Analytics and Statistics Hub

Safe and Engaged Communities

Respond to Priority 1 calls within 8 mins 14 secs 80% of the time


CY19 Actual

CY18 Actual

Objective Description

The average total response time includes time to answer, gather essential details, process, dispatch and safely travel to an emergency scene. Priority 1 emergency calls warrant officers responding with lights and sirens when the immediate presence of police is essential to save life, prevent serious injury, or to identify and detain a criminal suspect. This includes all “In-Progress” calls, such as shootings; domestic incidents; violent/sexual assaults; breaking and entering; bank robberies; carjacking; suicide attempts; or any major catastrophes. In these situations, officers are dispatched immediately, even while dispatchers work to gather additional details.

Trend Analysis

Police response times differ from area to area, based on factors like call volume and complexity, competing incidents, available resources, traffic congestion, weather conditions and size of the patrol area. When it comes to life-threatening emergencies or dangerous active crimes, a swift priority response can make a difference. In CY 2018, the Police Department completed a comprehensive patrol beat study, utilizing an independent national consultant, to help in the evaluation of response times and beat reconfiguration. 8 minutes and 14 seconds was the department-wide average response time in CY 2018. Increased call estimates and projections for CY 2019 and CY 2020 are due to a growing population and workforce, as well as increased use of technology to contact the call center. Police recently began monitoring response time with new software. CY 2018 data consists of August 2018 to December 2018. CY 2019 data will be updated at the end of the year to incorporate the final quarter of the current year.


  • Implemented new patrol beat configurations recommended following the 2018 external and internal comprehensive study.
  • Closely monitor the impact of beat reconfiguration on response times in 2019 and adjust resources and beat areas as needed through the HCPD Beat Realignment Committee.
  • Add additional patrol officers each year to keep up with population growth and catch up to the national average of 2.4 officers per 1,000 population.
  • Closely monitor and address vacancies in an effort to minimize patrol staffing deficiencies.
  • Continue to provide the highest training to all Police Department employees in regards to call taking, processing, and police response.
  • Equip all personnel with the latest technology to maximize performance and safe response.
  • Closely monitor and address vacancies and staffing levels as appropriate to workload within the 911 Communications Center.

Source: Howard County Police Department

Detailed Analysis

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