Top Tips for Successful Wireless Deployment
The APCO Wireless Model Community Managers, many of which have successfully deployed Phase I and Phase II wireless 9-1-1 services, urge all PSAP and 9-1-1 System Managers to utilize the benefit of their experience. These recommendations should be followed before completing any wireless implementation checklist or contracting for any services.
- Learn the role of each of the respective 9-1-1 authorities in your state, region, county,
district. Identify all that have some responsibility to accomplish the implementation.
- Thoroughly review the available informational materials describing how wireless
technology works; including the carrier selected call path signaling, principles of
location determination equipment as well as the role of third party databases.
- Seek a clear understanding from the local exchange carrier regarding the level of their
services, related costs to the PSAP/System and how the data stream will appear on the
ANI/ALI display equipment.
- Know your system, components and services well enough to identify any element that
may need to be upgraded; seek assistance from other PSAP/System Managers that
have already deployed this technology. Check the APCO Website for a link to the
APCO Wireless Centers that may have the same equipment as you.
- While digital mapping is not officially required for deployment, relying upon this
technology creates the burden to understand its vulnerabilities, the need for frequent
updates as well as any necessary upgrades and/or interfaces to work properly with your
- Be prepared to serve as the Project Manager, working diligently to forge the
partnerships necessary to bring full deployment to your service area. Individual carriers
may need to be treated separately, each has their own plan and may have already
obtained waivers from the FCC (use FCC link from APCO Website to check current
- The partnership should at a minimum include the wireless service provider,
local exchange carrier(s), customer premise equipment (CAD, Telephony, ANI/ALI)
technicians as well as geographic information services (GIS) resources (if applicable).
It is further suggested that staff training personnel be involved to best assess the need
for specialized training programs.
- Develop viable, initial backup and default routing plans; be prepared to specify default
position for failure of Phase II calls.
- Be prepared to conduct a public education program, establishing realistic expectations by wireless users, public safety responders as well as PSAP staff.
- Seek always to balance the zeal for implementation with the reality of system readiness and available services. As Project Manager, controlling the process means setting timelines and defining data and performance expectations, consistent with prevailing standards.