Cities move beyond walky-talkies

Karl W4KRL W4KRL at
Tue Nov 28 09:22:07 CST 2006

Cities move beyond walky-talkies and toward interoperability

The next time a terrorist attack or large-scale emergency strikes the
District of Columbia, citizens will see the region's first responders
respond in unison, said Washington Chief Technology Officer Suzanne Peck. 

Through the combined use of a wired, broadband network and a wireless
network covering Washington, 18 regional first-responder groups, together
with those in the district and their federal counterparts, will be able to
communicate seamlessly, share information and follow the orders of a single,
unified regional command center. 

The city's new $106 million Unified Communications Center, eight years in
the making, opened Sept. 26, and puts first responders in the best position
possible to deal with any emergency, Peck said. The center also has hardened
physical security, including blast proof glass and 72 hours' worth of
self-sustainability in case the area is severely damaged in a crisis.


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