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By GCN Staff

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Massachusetts readies IP-based, interoperable 911 system

Massachusetts will soon have a statewide emergency services system that will let first responders communicate in real time using Internet Protocol formats.

The Massachusetts State 911 Department awarded General Dynamics Information Technology a contract to build, install and operate an  IP-based system that will help the commonwealth’s public safety community integrate new technologies, including smart phones, texting, video and web services into its first-response arsenal.

Massachusetts Public Safety Secretary Andrea Cabral said the new system, “will effectively transform our analog based system into an IP- based system, making it compatible with today's changing technology and communication methods."

The deal equips the commonwealth to move to a statewide next-generation 911 system that complies with National Emergency Number Association's i3 architecture standards, which establishes nationwide interoperability for the system and will speed information sharing with first responder teams, officials said.

General Dynamics will replace Massachusetts’s legacy Enhanced 911 (E911) emergency call-handling system with a secure, IP-based NG 911 system. The new protocols clear the way to receive emergency service requests from existing public networks as well as new applications and devices, according to the company. Data from geographical information systems, for example, will be integrated into all emergency service requests to accurately map a caller's location and route calls to public safety answering points.

The company will also train more than 6,000 Massachusetts police, fire and dispatch workers and other emergency service organizations.

"This vitally important system transition enhances the safety of 911 users in the Commonwealth by allowing the public better, easier access to emergency responders," Cabral said.

General Dynamics said it has launched more than 50 E911 systems into service, including the recent transition of the E911 system in Morgan County, Ohio, to a NG911 network.

Posted by GCN Staff on Aug 28, 2014 at 9:09 AM


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