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Clarion Co. Modernizing 911 Technology with InterAct's Computer Aided Dispatch and GIS Systems

Clarion County, PA revamping emergency services operation with InterAct's public safety software that will also boost resource management capabilities.

Winston-Salem, NC -- InterAct Public Safety Systems, a leading supplier of public safety technology systems used by local, state, national and international agencies, announced that the Clarion County 911 Center in Pennsylvania has selected InterAct's Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) and Geographic Information System (GIS) to enhance their emergency dispatching and mapping operations.

The Clarion 911 Center, which is located in the northwestern part of Pennsylvania, handles emergency services for nearly 60,000 residents and averages around 18,000 calls every year. InterAct's computer aided dispatch system CAD will replace Clarion's paper-based call-taking system that has been in place since the 911 center was established.

"We are in the process of updating our 911 technology and InterAct's solutions possess the kind of innovative features that will bring numerous benefits to our operation and help us to create a state-of-the-art communications center," said Michael Rearick, director of the Clarion 911 Center. "Both of these applications are going to boost our response and tracking capabilities which is crucial in an emergency."

Dispatchers will no longer have to rely on pen and paper or dry-erase boards to manage calls, the computer aided dispatch system will automate the call-taking and dispatching process. The CAD software will help dispatchers easily and quickly view, list, track and log multiple incoming calls. Currently, one person must handle both call-taking and dispatching duties for police, fire and EMS services. The CAD system, once implemented, the CAD system will enable dispatchers and call-takers to work independently of each other while still sharing call information.

InterAct's GIS will also free up Clarion County dispatcher's time in between and during incoming calls. Instead of manually looking up a specific location on a wall map in order to relay directions to emergency field personnel, dispatchers can identify and manage caller locations, landmarks and traffic patterns, as well as track vehicle pursuits right from their digital map display on the computer so that they can answer calls more rapidly.

Clarion County spent a year evaluating various public safety technology providers before choosing InterAct. InterAct's applications are flexible, user-friendly and will flawlessly integrate with the center's existing software that is ESRI-based (Environmental Systems Resource Institute).

"Neighboring counties have been raving about their experience with InterAct's training and implementation teams," Rearick said. "We are confident that they will go above and beyond the call of duty to ensure that this transition goes smoothly for the entire Clarion County 911 staff."

The 33-year-old communications center is believed to be Pennsylvania's first 911 center. Clarion's 911 operation is housed in an old prison and the first dispatcher was responsible for prison duties as well as dispatching.

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