Fire and rescue services collaborate to save lives

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Our client is a UK fire and rescue service providing emergency service cover to one specific county in England.

Issues

Every emergency service has to be accredited by the Cabinet office to verify they have a secure IT infrastructure before they are allowed to connect to another emergency services network.

In this instance, our client required our help to achieve something that no other emergency service had done before; to connect to another emergency service in a different county to share the Command and Control resource.

This would mean they would not only save money by sharing the resource and working together, but also improve on response times across the two counties.

Solution

Quiss Technology were called upon because of the work it has carried out with other UK emergency services. This work has given us a comprehensive understanding around the applications that are used and the way they interact.

Quiss Technology first had to help improve the security of the network by implementing a new network infrastructure and firewall solution. This made the network more structured and more importantly secure to help with their Code of Connection accreditation.

Quiss then visited each station within the service and configured all equipment at each site to connect to a new MPLS circuit. This connected all stations to the main network making communication and application delivery very fast and efficient.

Shortly afterwards, Quiss implemented a new telephone system that would integrate into the Command and Control system, giving operators access to the latest technology when taking emergency calls.

A link was created between the two counties emergency services and a lot of testing was carried out to make sure the link was secure. It was vital that there were no single points of failure as this would be the link that carried network data and VOIP telephone information from one service to the other via one Command and Control system.

Quiss worked very closely with all application providers and the Command and Control system provider to make sure they worked seamlessly as people’s lives may have depended on it.

Benefits

The costs involved to implement a Command and Control system are vast and often unaffordable by one force. However by teaming up with another service and sharing the costs, both counties are able to benefit from the resource.

The new systems that have been implemented have also enabled the two services to collaborate and work together. This will ultimately provide a better more efficient service to the public.

With this shared command and control system, in time these two services will be able to mobilise each other’s units to emergencies across two counties, speeding up response times and literally saving lives.

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Fire & Rescue Consultancy

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