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Police Communications Interoperability Press Release

December 08, 2008

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Grady County Emergency Responders Receive Equipment Donation from BAE Systems

Oklahoma City, OK— BAE Systems, Inc. has donated, installed, and provided training for 10 First InterComm™ interoperable communication units worth a total value of $65,000 to emergency responders in Grady County, OK.

“Effective communications is extremely important in emergency operations.  The donation of this communication equipment will enable disparate radio systems to communicate at emergency scenes. Lack of communications between emergency first responders was addressed as early as 1935, and as emergency incidents have become infinitely more complex, technology to address this problem has not been available until recently.” according to State Representative Joe Dorman.

Representative Dorman spearheaded the donation through a combined effort between BAE Systems and the National Association of State Fire Marshals.

“My main goal is to have adequate communications between emergency first responders at the incident scene. Lack of adequate communications is a nation-wide problem.” said Robert Doke, Oklahoma State Fire Marshal.  “Grady County first responders will now be able to communicate with each other during any fire, car accident or large-scale disaster, expediting response times and eliminating any communication gaps.”

Most importantly, emergency responder safety is at risk during all incidents. Delayed or ineffective interoperable communications can result in costly errors that affect life safety.  The installed First InterComm system VCA100 units provide Grady County with immediate full-county interoperability using their existing radios.  “The donation introduced a viable interoperability solution that benefits Grady County, thus fulfilling First InterComm solution’s ultimate goal to help save lives,” said Mike Greene, Director of Homeland Security Solutions for BAE Systems.

The equipment is installed in vehicles of the following agencies.
1.    Chickasha Fire Department
2.    Grady County Emergency Management Director
3.    Grady County Emergency Operations Center Mobile Command Unit 
4.    Grady County Fire Chief
5.    Grady County District Fire Chief - north 
6.    Grady County District Fire Chief - central
7.    Grady County District Fire Chief - south
8.    Rush Springs Fire Department 
9.    Rush Springs Emergency Medical Service
10.  Verden Fire Department

This project ensures that incident-level interoperability is automatically established at the scene of an emergency, while also providing the capability for enhanced situational awareness.  Grady County is now equipped with the technological capability for effective communications and efficient incident command that is needed to improve daily operations, prevent injury, and save lives.