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Federal Report Estimates Extent of Interoperability Challenges for 9-1-1

By Jeff Cohen This won’t come as news to anyone working in public safety communications, but 9-1-1 faces significant interoperability challenges.  While ECCs are generally able to transfer basic voice 9-1-1 calls to neighboring ECCs, they often cannot share other types of communications and data important for emergency response. What might be surprising is that…

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2020 Legislative Priorities

By Jeff Cohen We just started a new year, but there are only a few months left to achieve a number of public safety legislative objectives before Congress enters into election mode. Click on the topics listed below to read background info and talking points for raising these matters, especially if you have plans to…

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FCC on the Verge of a Major Setback to 9-1-1 Location Accuracy

By Jeff Cohen This Friday, the FCC will vote on new rules that are supposed to ensure that first responders can locate someone who calls 9-1-1 from inside a multi-story building.  Unfortunately, the rules will not only fail to produce meaningful improvements, the FCC will let wireless carriers continue to avoid pursuing much better options…

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New Progress for Getting Wireless 9-1-1 Calls to the Right ECC

By Mark Reddish Apple recently announced that devices running iOS 13 will enable location fixes quickly enough to be used for routing wireless 9-1-1 calls.  This is a significant development because routing 9-1-1 calls based on the device’s estimated location, rather than relying on the location of the cell sector serving the caller, will allow…

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Quick Updates for the 2019 Annual Conference

By Jeff Cohen, Chief Counsel & Director of Government Relations APCO’s Annual Conference and Expo is fast approaching.  We have the remaining program updates for the Cutting Edge Developments track to share.  APCO’s Government Relations Office chooses content for this track, and we make a habit of holding one or two sessions open as close…

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What Does Interoperable Mean in the Real World?

Steve Leese is Director of Comm Center & 9-1-1 Services at APCO International. In the field of public safety, interoperability has several specific meanings that apply to the tools used in our profession.  For instance, fire apparatus hose fittings are commonly standardized so that departments from different jurisdictions can provide mutual aid effectively.  Merriam Webster…

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9-1-1: Nearing 50 Years of Dependable Emergency Assistance

By Martha Carter, President, APCO International February 16, 2018 will mark 50 years since the first 9-1-1 call was placed in Haleyville, Alabama.  In the decades since, 9-1-1 has become one of the most well-known brands of all time.  Children are taught at the earliest possible age to call 9-1-1 in an emergency.  And the…

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Achieving the True Promise of Next Generation 9-1-1

9-1-1 is part of America’s critical infrastructure, but it profoundly lags behind in technology. Public safety communications professionals across the country deserve to have the best tools available to protect and save lives.  Next Generation 9-1-1 promises to deliver many benefits, including putting 9-1-1 on par with technology used in the commercial sector, which for…

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All In: Betting Against Opt-Out

With FirstNet’s historic announcement of its selection of AT&T as its partner, we are about to achieve the promise of a state-of-the-art, nationwide, interoperable public safety broadband network.  Each state will soon be presented with the opportunity of FirstNet’s proposed network build – one that will forever transform and improve emergency response.  States would receive…

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FirstNet Works to Foster Innovation in Public Safety Apps

By Jeff Posner, FirstNet Senior Applications Architect If you know FirstNet, then you know we are focused on putting broadband technology into the hands of public safety personnel nationwide. What you may not know is that FirstNet also is leading the way on a host of public safety-focused technologies, not the least of which is in…

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