Thursday, February 25, 2010

DHS trains 1,600 first responders for multi-jurisdictional incidents: "More than 1,600 first responders have completed the All-Hazards Type-III Communications Unit Leader (COML)training course, a program designed to improve multi-jurisdictional coordination among first responders at an incident, said Chris Essid, director of Department of Homeland Security’s Office of Emergency Communications (OEC).

As part of the National Emergency Communications Plan, the OEC offered 66 COML training courses nationwide to help public-safety professionals more effectively lead and coordinate communications during emergencies and large-scale events. Multi-jurisdictional events around the nation have demonstrated the benefits of consistent planning, training and operating procedures, Essid said. In fact, it was the emergency-response community that identified the need for COML training and helped DHS create the formal training program by building on the successful wildfire-scenario model."
D.C. picked as site for urban 700 MHz public-safety demonstration: "Washington, D.C., will be the location of a 700 MHz broadband demonstration network that is designed to test the public-safety capabilities that a wireless broadband network could bring to first responders in urban areas.

The D.C. testbed is the second such network to be announced by Public Safety Communications Research (PSCR), which previously said it would conduct similar tests for rural areas at its facilities outside of Boulder, Colo. The D.C. demonstration will use the same tower infrastructure that was deployed for the district’s now-defunct 700 MHz 3G wireless system for public safety, said Bryan Spivak, with district’s chief technology officer."

Friday, February 05, 2010

Critical Calls: "... 'Technology investments go on, but without a concept of operations to act as a guide, they go on with no end,' says [Mark Borkowski, executive director for DHS' Secure Border Initiative], adding that such projects must have clear objectives."

"What are the primary functions of the system? Who are the users and stakeholders? How do they operate both under normal circumstances as well as in exceptional situations? Will users be able to turn on interoperability when they need it, and turn it off when they don't? The answers to these questions are crucial to developing any wireless communications system."
Washington, D.C., Partners with Feds to Test 4G Technology for National Public Safety Network: "At the end of 2009, the world of fourth-generation (4G) mobile telecommunications technology got a boost when a Swedish telecom operator deployed the first-ever commercial long-term evolution (LTE) services in Stockholm, Sweden and Oslo, Norway.

This is critical because even though the company, TeliaSonera, launched the network for commercial purposes, U.S. public safety agencies support LTE technology for a proposed nationwide public safety network on the 700 MHz radio band."