LA deploys Motorola MOTOMESH WiFi network

The City of Los Angeles today will unveil a municipal wireless network and video surveillance system in the city's Jordan Downs public-housing complex to curb crime and provide a safe environment for residents in one of the city's high-crime areas.

City officials plan to expand the system to supply public wireless-broadband access to residents and schools in the area.

The deployment was spearheaded by the Los Angeles City Police Department in partnership with the Justice and Housing and Urban Development departments. The network consists of 10 wireless video surveillance cameras and the Motorola MOTOMESH network. MOTOMESH is a multiradio wireless-broadband network that provides WiFi access for the public and enables emergency first responders to communicate. The Motorola Canopy wireless-broadband solution provides backhaul for the network, company officials said.

Video surveillance is not new. It has been used by law enforcement for many years, said Mike Fabbri, Motorola's director of data solutions operations. However, the LA deployment has several unique features.

By deploying MOTOMESH, LA officials can expand the network beyond Jordon Downs to cover the entire city, Fabbri said. Plus, the network has full-motion/full-mobility capability, which supports speeds of up to 100 mph. This function allows first responders to continue communication while in motion, he said.

In addition, the network supports Motorola's Mobile Video Sharing technology, which allows first responders in the field to share video. With Mobile Video Sharing, police officers can use their laptop computers or handheld devices to pan across surveillance locations and even zoom in and out on suspected criminal activity. This increases officers' situational awareness and presence in the community. Additionally, Los Angeles city fire units that respond to calls in Jordan Downs will have access to video feeds provided by the system.

'Bringing video into a command office is one thing, but pushing it out to first responders' so they can share live feeds is the next phase in the use of video for public safety, Fabbri said. The technology enables emergency responders to use call methods familiar to them. They then can push video out to individuals or to groups of people, he said.

The network has been deployed in stages over the past six to eight months, Fabbri said.

"Since the cameras were installed, major crime has dropped 32 percent in Jordan Downs in the last two months, compared to the same period last year," said LA chief of police William Bratton in a prepared statement.

Bratton will join Los Angeles mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and Motorola officials to publicly announce the network. The network will be demonstrated today at 3:00 p.m. (PDT) simultaneously at the Jordan Downs public-housing district and the LAPD's South East Division station.

About the Author

Rutrell Yasin is is a freelance technology writer for GCN.

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