Ohio announces the first statewide information and data exchange system for first responders in US
| 07.20.2006 | 04:15:47 | Views: 3047 | ID:
July 20 '06: Ohio officials announced the completion of the nation's first statewide voice and data communications system for first responders, and emergency management officials according to Government Technology's Public CIO last week. The system, the Multi-Agency Radio Communications System (MARCS), "enables police, fire and emergency management crews throughout the state to coordinate with each other more effectively to effective serve and respond to Ohioans during everyday operations and in the event of an emergency."
The MARCS system's most recent emergency-related test came in June when severe flooding in Northwest Ohio required local first responders to coordinate rescue and recovery operations.The system, run by the Ohio Office of Information Technology, pulls together the state's 14 agencies, 138 local health departments, 172 hospitals, and all 88 sheriff offices and county emergency management agencies in addition to more than 110 "fire, police, and first responder agencies," Public CIO reported. The voice and data services system "utilizing a total of 203 radio sites and supporting approximately 19,370 total voice users and 2,251 data devices," is also compatible with existing communications systems in use around the state. Construction on the system began in 2000 and was completed in December 2004. After a Computer Aided Dispatch system was incorporated in April 2006, MARCS become totally operational. The CAD allows "realtime tracking and coordination of activities between first responders and state, county and local agencies," Public CIO continued.
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