Lansing authorities use command center to fight weekend crime

Authorities in the Capital City have been busy the last few days, investigating a homicide, several shootings, and putting out a large fire.

But aside from the day to day 911 calls, police and fire officials also have their hands full monitoring thousands of people at Common Ground.

They call it “the nerve center.”

One room, with officials from Lansing Fire, EMS, Law Enforcement, and even Common Ground Administration.

“This is where we come together so we can openly communicate. We have a true handle on what’s happening not only in the park, but also we monitor everything that’s going on within the city,” says Mike Tobin, Chief of the Emergency Management Division at the Lansing Fire Department.

It’s been a busy weekend for police and fire officials, balancing crime in the city and keeping a close eye on Common Ground.

But Tobin says if a major even happens downtown, it won’t go unnoticed.

“When we have a large event like common ground, all the key personal that would handle a major incident in the city, like a large structure fire, a homicide investigation, major accident investigation, they’re all in this room,” says Tobin.

When multiple calls come in at once, Tobin says, it all boils down to resources.

Officials quickly evaluate each situation and send crews out accordingly.

And that, was the case last night when a fire broke out at a Quality Dairy warehouse in Reo Town.

“At the peak of that fire, we had every single fire resource that Lansing Fire had on duty last night at the fire, so we still have to cover all the additional 911 calls that come in,” says Tobin.

It happened around the same time Common Ground was wrapping up for the night.

“It’s a juggling of resources, making sure that everything is covered, making sure that everyone is taken care of, but we have the command team here that can do that,” says Tobin.

Despite the crime related incidents that have happened in the city this weekend, Tobin says, this year’s music festival has been calm when compared to last year.

He says, crews have answered less than a dozed calls for help, for minor issues.

“This is the way we like to see an event happen, we like to see all of our people doing just general work around stuff, no emergency responses,” says Tobin.

But no matter the issue, he says police and fire crews in the city are prepared and ready to tackle anything head on.

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