Broward County will soon have a new public safety radio system. The Broward County Commission approved a $59.5 million expenditure for the new system and support maintenance for up to 10 years.
“We are replacing older technology with a more robust solution,” said Brett Bayag, acting director of the office of regional communications and technology for Broward County. “We did an assessment of the county public safety radio system and found that we needed to bolster the system. A technical consultant did an assessment of the existing radio system and recommended that we add seven new tower sites for transmitting radio signals.”
The new system project includes $30.4 million for a state-of-the-art Motorola P25 system, $26.4 million to pay for maintenance and support for 10 years, $2.5 million for optional services and $200,000 for additional training of personnel.
Broward County hopes to have the entire system installed by December 2018. There will be improvements to the whole radio communications system so that it will meet the latest standards of the Association of Public Safety Communications Officials (APCO) and will have interoperable digital wireless communications. It is going from the legacy analog system to digital. Seven new towers will be installed and two of them will be in Hollywood so that some of the coverage gaps will be eliminated. The consultant found coverage gaps in areas including Hollywood that needed to be addressed, and this new system will eliminate the gaps.
In addition, Broward County’s regional 911 Consolidated Dispatch Centers are now using Motorola Solutions’ PremierOne Computer-Aided Dispatch (CAD) so they can more quickly and reliably communicate critical information with police, fire and other first responders to help people during emergencies.
Broward County’s three centers handle about 1.7 million emergency calls a year. The new PremierOne CAD replaces an outdated system and will manage incidents and share information throughout the region. It is one component of the County’s $113 million investment in emergency communication operations and system improvements, which have resulted in Broward having one of the fastest emergency response times in the nation.
“This multi-jurisdictional, multi-agency and multi-discipline CAD system interfaces with all of the Broward County Regional Consolidated E-911 systems vital to receiving, processing and implementing rapid response to 911 calls, and will greatly enhance service to people in Broward County during emergency situations,” said Bayag.