Chicago's $20 million grant upgrades emergency responder radios
By Fran Spielman
Chicago Sun Times
CHICAGO — Two years ago, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security released a blistering report suggesting that first responders in Chicago and Cook County were ill-prepared to communicate with one another in the event of a natural disaster or terrorist attack.
Chicago ranked among the worst for disaster communication of 75 metropolitan areas rated in a mock disaster exercise. Homeland Security cited a "fragmented regional communications infrastructure" with "insufficient channels for joint operations," forcing many first responders to use their own cell phones.