911 puts mom of unresponsive child on hold for 8 minutes

Shelby County dispatchers blame this incident on a flood of non-emergency calls


MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A mother calling 911 after finding her 3-year-old son unresponsive was put on hold for eight minutes.

Laura Matthews found her son lying unconscious on the bathroom floor. After calling 911, she was put on hold, and when she was finally was transferred to an operator, there was a technical glitch.

"I really thought he was going to die in my arms," Matthews told FOX13.

Dispatchers from the Shelby County dispatch center said emergency lines are flooded by non-emergency calls, causing incidents like this last one.

Matthews hung up the phone and handed her son, Oliver, to her husband, who raced him to the hospital in the family's car.

Doctors told Matthews her son was having a seizure, but was going to be OK.

Despite being relieved, the mother of four thought the situation was still concerning. "It’s really scary to think about. I worry about folks in extremely dire situations who might not have fared so well."

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