Clearing up emergency communications
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (CBS2/FOX28) — Right now emergency responders in Iowa operate on a patch work of communications systems and that can lead to confusion.
“When working an event or a disaster we literally can't talk to each other because everybody's got a different band of radio and a different frequency,” says Thomas Lampe, Chief of the Iowa Department of Public Safety Communications Bureau.
Now a tower being built near the Iowa State Patrol's District 11 office in Cedar Rapids is one piece of the $58 million solution.
“That's one of 89 almost 90 tower sites to make this network complete,” says Lampe.
The network is the Iowa Statewide Interoperability Communications System (ISICS) creating for seamless communication between all first responders.
“To achieve total interoperability, the solution is one platform across the state and that's what we're building,”
The 700 megahertz signal will be a major upgrade
For troopers, our signal right now is completely almost gone,” says Lampe “All we get is static and skip.”
He compares it to going from A.M. radio to Satellite.
Iowa is one of the last states in the country to have a statewide interoperable system and has been in the works for more than 10 years.
“Most states have it we were just lagging behind, so to finally achieve that is a tremendous step forward for the state in public safety,” says Lampe.
The construction of the towers is set to be complete by the end of December and the goal is to have the entire system online in summer 2018.
Joseph Huisinga. (2017, April 19). Clearing up emergency communications. Retrieved from http://cbs2iowa.com/news/local/clearing-up-emergency-communications