First responders need accurate information about the likelihood that exposure to opioids such as fentanyl when treating a patient is dangerous, as well as what types of protective procedures to follow, writes Mike McEvoy, EMS coordinator of Saratoga County, N.Y. McEvoy says a single pair of nitrile gloves often provides sufficient protection.
Progress toward a public safety consolidation between Marion County, Fla., and the city of Ocala is continuing, and the County Commission voted to add six new emergency dispatcher positions along with three supervisors. The City Council had voted to separate Ocala Fire Rescue from the county's public safety communications center, but reversed its vote and has contributed to the cost of a consultant to assess the consolidation options.
Luzerne County, Pa., is planning to procure a digital communications system for its 9-1-1 emergency center intended to support 167 public safety agencies, give comprehensive in-building coverage for four buildings and provide "99.999% reliability" for critical applications. The commission has issued a request for proposals and anticipates a cost of about $20 million.
Video walls are being used by law enforcement agencies to share information more rapidly and make decisions based on a larger universe of data, writes Joseph Mangano of CDW-G. "We aggregated our 9-1-1 dispatch system with our video wall pop-up views to augment the way we monitor neighborhood cameras," says Sgt. Johnmichael O'Hare of the Capital City Command Center in Hartford, Conn.
The Zeeland Township Fire Department in Michigan purchased a new drone with funds donated by local businesses, and five members of the department obtained Federal Aviation Administration certification to fly it. The drone, which has already been used to locate a patient with Alzheimer's disease who had become disoriented, can reach speeds of up to 30 miles per hour and has a cargo capacity of nine pounds.
The goTenna mesh networking toolkit helps first responders communicate when traditional networks such as cell towers fail, says CEO Daniela Perdomo. "[T]his is allowing us to be able to … message back and forth between our team in that completely disconnected [temporary refuge area] environment," says La Honda, Calif., fire Chief Ari Delay.