Miami Beach Fire Rescue to supervise emergency dispatch service

City manager makes leadership changes to public safety communications unit


MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – City manager Jimmy Morales ordered the Miami Beach Fire Department Tuesday to start supervising The Miami Beach Public Safety Communications Unit.

Fire Chief Virgil Fernandez will be implementing charges to the unit, which oversees the personnel answering 911 calls and the emergency dispatchers who send orders to the city's firefighters, paramedics and police officers. 

"There have been some performance issues raised in recent months," Morales wrote in a Tuesday letter

The management shift from the department of emergency management to the fire department begins Oct. 1. Charles Tear took over the unit in 2014, but Morales believes the changes implemented haven't been enough. 

The city has struggled to get the department on the right track for years. In 2014, there were photos showing dispatchers sleeping while on duty. In 2015, Steve Berke complained about having to call 911 twice before police officer arrived after an intruder broke into his home. 


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