The current emergency radio network is approaching 20 years old. Although it works dependably now, it is nearing the end of its useful life.
Parts on the system are wearing out and, over time, will be subject to increased risk for service outages and dead spots in coverage, and will make effective communications for emergency responders more difficult.
By the end of 2018, the vendor we use to supply new and replacement parts, as well as repair used parts for the system, will no longer provide them to us. In addition, the current system was designed in 1992 to serve King County’s population at that time. Over the years, our population has steadily increased and residents are living in regions they didn’t before, which creates coverage challenges for the current system.
If funded, PSERN will provide new and improved features such as better reliability, increased capacity to keep up with King County’s growing population, additional radio sites for improved coverage, and better security for communications on the network.
There are four owners of the current radio communications network:
- Eastside Public Safety Communications Agency (EPSCA)
- King County
- City of Seattle
- Valley Communications Center (ValleyComm).
King County is responsible for leading and implementing the project on behalf of the owners and will see the project through to completion. All of the owners will be involved in key project decisions such as the network design, project budget, and project schedule.
Motorola Solutions was recently selected as the system vendor for the project.