Oklahoma is known for its small mountain ranges, prairies, farmland, and forests. It is also known for its tumultuous and highly destructive weather. Sitting squarely between the Great Plains and the Ozark Plateau, most of the state lies in Tornado Alley, making it prone to severe thunderstorms, damaging winds, large hail, and tornadoes.
The First Responder Network Authority team recognizes the unique communications challenges that Oklahoma first responders face. We have been working closely with Oklahoma public safety officials since 2014, capturing their feedback and translating it into the design of the FirstNet network. During the development of state deployment plans, our team worked hand-in-hand with Oklahoma leaders to ensure the plan was customized to address their needs, including:
- Expanding coverage beyond what’s achieved today in rural and tribal areas and in the northeast portion of the state
- Making devices available through various options, including a “Bring Your Own Device” solution
- Delivering a network for public safety with increased geographical coverage, redundancy, and resiliency
Following this close collaboration, Oklahoma chose to adopt the plan and “opt in” to FirstNet. Today, we continue to meet regularly with state and local officials to discuss their public safety broadband needs. In 2019 alone, our team met with Oklahoma public safety officials 25 times. Our engagements in Oklahoma included attending the Oklahoma Sheriff and Peace Officers Training Conference, participating in the Region 6 Regional Emergency Communication Coordinators Working Group and Regional Interagency Steering Committee Meeting, and supporting the Citizen Potawatomi Nation Balloon Festival. Engagements like these are crucial to the ongoing success of the network and the advancement of public safety communications across the state and the nation.
Connect with our team of Public Safety Advisors to learn about FirstNet in your community.
- At the 2019 FireLake Fireflight Balloon Festival in Shawnee, Oklahoma, public safety officials from the Citizen Potawatomi Tribe relied on FirstNet-enabled devices for seamless interoperability among the many agencies supporting the festival.
- In 2018, the Citizen Potawatomi Tribe hosted its annual FireLake Fireflight Balloon Festival in Shawnee, Oklahoma. With FirstNet devices in hand and a deployable on site, tribal first responders were able to better handle emergencies that required a rapid response, including a lost child, heat-related incidents, and cardiac issues.