Blog

CalAmp At APCO 2016: The Data Age Of Emergency Communications

  • August 04, 2016
  • Kristy C.
APCOblog_0-1

Emergency events, while unplanned, are a part of life – from manmade to natural disasters to an animal in a well. Often overlooked, yet essential to getting the situation handled, is how your mission-critical information (communications and data) gets delivered in real-time.

The National Emergency Number Association estimates that there are 240 million 9-1-1 calls in the U.S. every year (and 70% or more are now from wireless devices). The equipment you use has to be reliable and able to work in the most adverse of conditions so you can render the appropriate assistance.

And data is becoming as important as voice / radio access. Whether to use for analysis or document the situation at hand, being able to transmit, store, and access your data from anywhere means the devices need to be connected via the cloud. Virtual dashboards allow you to tap into more systems – your own departments’ and other agencies’ databases – to grab the information you need. It’s key for situational awareness especially in tense situations.

There are two parts to these solutions. First, you start with the devices. For example, CalAmp has at least two military-grade routers that can handle your demands: Fusion and Vanguard 5530, plus our LMU-2630 fleet tracking unit. They work in vehicles, with stationary equipment, and a city’s infrastructure. Our Fusion router, for example, offers wireless connectivity over public and private LTE cellular networks (and was designed to eliminate the risk of a single point failure).

Some of the CalAmp devices are eligible to be purchased with Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) Program funds. AFG 2016 funding is anticipated to be $310.5 Million.

As I mentioned in the beginning, in this connected world, it really isn’t about the “boxes” or radios or smartphones anymore. The true power is in the data collected – the verification that can be pulled from it or the trends it can reveal. Therefore, the network you use to connect to the internet is just as important.

The ideal solution for your needs will depend on device usage. If you’re simply using routers or trackers to plug into the internet, then a system – such as DeviceOutlook™— to monitor and push out updates to these resources is all that you require. If your team, on the other hand, wants information from vehicles and equipment, a more robust system, like FleetOutlook™, should be utilized to handle the higher volume of data, which may include locations, vehicle health, or engine hours. It’s great for dispatch who can let citizens know the ETA of your team on a map. Both of CalAmp’s solutions work with a multitude of devices.

PublicSafety

Below are two case study outtakes. Two of which will be available at our booth with more details.

  • The Oakland Fire Department was operating on a low bandwidth system and also wanted to start accessing additional applications. Now with their Fusion routers, they can respond more effectively by having a fuller picture of the situation at hand – building structure, location on a map, patient history, etc.
  • The Ottawa County Central Dispatch Authority coordinates dispatch services for the sheriff, police, ambulance, and fire departments. Though a long-time CalAmp customer, they tested the Fusion against competitors as part of their upgrade project. The routers were installed in land- and marine-based vehicles with communications working seamlessly to provide critical information for better situational awareness in the field.

Want more information? View a demo? Visit CalAmp at the APCO 2016 conference on Monday, August 15th or Tuesday August 16th. Our booth is #1567. We’ll be doing a Vanguard 5530 Connect and recharge demo. For more information, click here.