This year, the Public Safety Advisory Committee (PSAC) debuted new methods of working with the FirstNet Authority and its partner, AT&T, on advising their work towards the FirstNet mission. With the FirstNet network realized in 2018, this is bringing a new focus and flurry of work and activity to the PSAC in their advisory role.
The Washington County Sheriff’s office was among the first in the nation – and the very first in Maryland – to subscribe to FirstNet. In 2018, the southern portion of the county was badly affected by a powerful line of thunderstorms. Within hours, FirstNet mobilized a Satellite Cell on Light Truck (SatCOLT), boosting the ability to communicate and coordinate emergency response efforts.
EMS using FirstNet are already seeing its possibilities and learning how the dedicated communication system dramatically supports their work in the field.
More than 3,600 agencies have now joined FirstNet, the nationwide public safety broadband network dedicated to America’s first responders. As public safety agencies sign up for FirstNet and tap into the key capabilities of their network, the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet Authority) continues to work hand-in-hand with them to understand their current and future broadband needs.
FirstNet aids in monitoring restricted airspace at the 2018 Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta
At the 2018 Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta in New Mexico, public safety agencies employed a drone detection system to monitor restricted airspace above the event and surrounding areas. FirstNet provided the critical connection needed to support the system as well as on-the-ground operations.
Every year, hundreds of thousands of cheering spectators line the streets of Boston to witness the Boston Marathon. In 2018, 80 ruggedized FirstNet devices with push-to-talk and location-tracking applications helped Boston and Brookline police, fire, and incident response teams protect the community.
Each October, law enforcement leaders come together to attend several significant events that recognize the past year’s accomplishments and challenges, and work together to identify solutions and goals for the future. These events include the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) Annual Conference and Exposition in conjunction with the Major Cities Chiefs Association (MCCA) Fall Meeting and the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF) Town Hall.
First responders in Harris County and the city of Houston are exploring different ways to use FirstNet and its app ecosystem to enhance operations and break down interoperability walls.
From day-to-day operations to emergencies and large events, lives depend on public safety's ability to communicate. FirstNet not only provides reliable "always on" connections, but also allows first responders to confidently send and receive data, voice and text transmissions with the security their life-saving mission demands.
Although the distances and differences between nations are vast, the mission of public safety to protect lives and property is essentially the same globally, along with the need for reliable communications. Some nations are planning to create nationwide wireless networks dedicated to first responders.