From the 911 dispatch center where emergency calls come in to first-responders who sometimes have to make life-and-death decisions in seconds.
For law enforcement a 911 dispatch center is where they usually first learn of a crime in progress.
Crime Watch Daily hears emergencies calls as they come in and shows you firsthand what law enforcement are confronted with as they arrive on the scene.
The nation's 911 operators are the unsung heroes behind America's brave first-responders.
Crime Watch Daily teamed up with law enforcement in Montgomery County, Ohio, where the per capita murder rate in Dayton is actually higher than Chicago.
At the busy 911 dispatch center they average close to 400,000 calls to 911 per year.
As Crime Watch Daily previously reported in our groundbreaking heroin special, overdoses and heroin sales are a serious problem in this slice of Middle America.
Dayton, Ohio and surrounding Montgomery County are ground-zero in the heroin epidemic.
Montgomery County Sheriff's Major Daryl Wilson says this part of Ohio has become a hub for illegal drugs.
"Per capita I think ours is like second or third in the nation," said Maj. Wilson.
And when you need help, the Montgomery County Regional Dispatch Center is where your 911 call is answered.
When day turns into night, the operators keep the lights low, their eyes focused on the four computer screens in front of them.
One screen shows a series of standard questions the operators ask. But these people are ready for anything.
One dispatcher just talked a suicidal woman out of killing herself.
Dispatchers hone their skills with on-the-job training, and they are all certified in emergency medical response.
Reading from a scripted series of statements they reassure a caller help is on the way. While they are still on the call the dispatcher is already typing instructions that are immediately sent straight to the onboard computer in a sheriff's cruiser.
At each desk is a tower of multi-colored lights: Red means the dispatcher is talking on the radio to deputies; yellow means the dispatcher is on a call; green means the dispatcher is available for a call. And blue means no one is on the phone.
Another day, another night at the 911 call center, the front line in the war on crime and drugs.
So the next time you see the blue and red lights behind you, remember there's a team of dedicated first-responders who have your back.