Reporter’s notebook: NENA
LONG BEACH, Calif.–Stancil Recorders plans to introduce a VoIP-enabled card for its logging recorders sometime around the end of the year, said CEO Michael Custer.
Clear-Com Communication Systems has unveiled a full duplex wireless intercom system that frees incident commanders to roam up to 1000 feet from a mobile command center, according to Daryl Hartner, applications engineer.
The National Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology Center is beta testing an online calculator designed to help public-safety answering point managers determine their staffing needs by plugging in variables such as call volume, staff size and overtime hours. More important, the application is expected to provide PSAP managers with quantitative evidence to support their staffing requests, said Tom Tolman, program manager. “It’s a common problem–those who control the purse strings need a second opinion that they can trust,” he said. “The online calculator can help sway them.” Tolman said the application should be ready to go by Fall 2005.
Eventide introduced Version 1.3 of its logger and archiving system software, which is designed to improve the efficiency of emergency call centers by streamlining the message-archiving process, according to Gordon Moore, general manager. It does so by letting users simultaneously record to both a local hard drive and a networked hard drive. In addition, Eventide unveiled the DIR911T, which offers two or four channels of digital recording. Messages can be played back at variable speeds using dedicated buttons and a jog shuttle wheel. Finally, Eventide plans to introduce a new call browser that will interface more easily with other applications such as computer-aided dispatch systems. The browser will be available, “hopefully by APCO (in August),” Moore said.
Zetron has fully integrated its Integrator Map solution with Version 5.5 of its Integrator 9-1-1 emergency call-taking solution. Integrator Map is the result of a December 2004 partnership between Zetron and St. Cloud, Minn.-based GeoComm. The mapping solution automatically displays wireline and wireless E911, tracks wireless callers in motion and receives E911 ALI information when interfaced to any NENA-compliant CAD port. The solution also lets users see the same spot on the ground through different data lenses, such as HAZMAT, aerial image, emergency service zone and police beat. When viewed through the HAZMAT lens, the solution provides chemical plume modeling, said the company’s Eric Keltto. In addition, the company unveiled its next-generation paging terminal, the Model 2700. Operating on an IP-based platform, the solution can accommodate up to 1 million subscribers and offers hot-swappable drives, Keltto said. “If any drive goes down, the user can pull it and replace it without having to bring the system down and losing data,” he said.
Level 3 Communications announced an enhancement to its E911 platform that lets voice-over-IP service providers provide location information for nomadic VoIP subscribers, as mandated by the FCC. According to Level 3, the solution is based upon NENA’s proposed I2 standard, which NENA Technical Solutions Director Roger Hixson this week predicted would be finalized in about 40 days. The standard integrates fixed and nomadic VoIP service providers into the current 911 system, requires all VoIP calls to be routed to the correct PSAP via a selective router and requires the provisioning of location information for the caller using the Automatic Location Information (ALI) database. Intrado also introduced a solution with similar goals, dubbed V9-1-1 Mobility Service.
SunGard OSSI plans to roll out its public-safety software suite on a national basis, according to the company’s Andrew Smith. The product previously had been distributed on a limited basis in North Carolina. The suite makes it possible to share data between CAD systems and integrates records management and jail management systems. The CAD-to-CAD data-sharing capability is particularly important for states that have a large number of public-safety agencies, such as California, Smith said. “We’re seeing a much greater cooperative effort between agencies since 9/11,” he said. “We’re seeing a lot more data sharing.”
Tel Control Inc. and Avaya are collaborating on a deployment in Galveston, Texas, scheduled to be completed in Fall 2005, that will link eight public-safety answering points via an IP-backbone infrastructure. The solution integrates TCI’s call control software and an Avaya softswitch to create a flexible and redundant hub-and-spoke architecture that will carry voice and data traffic over a private IP network and let PSAPs redirect calls to other call centers in the event of overflow.
“Galveston will now have a network where PSAPs can route overflow traffic in an emergency situation to another dispatcher that will immediately be recognized by the system,” said Anne Marie Lange, TCI regional sales manager. “It’s a flexible, scalable way to network PSAPs together.”