Local progress on wireless 911; Statehouse loving home rule w/this issue because of infrastructure cost?

As I’ve written before, there’s an impending dread related to how poorly Ohio and much of the country’s wireless 911 network works. This report from the Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials-International (APCO) examines and outlines just how inadequate the systems are at handling wireless 911 and how immiment the need is to upgrade wireless 911 service. And the Ohio legislature has a direct relation to how poorly it operates in Ohio.

But today, the Plain Dealer Metro Breaking News feed offered this encouraging info, at least encouraging if you support home rule, which, it might seem, our lovely General Assembly does if it means that they can skip out on spending money on important statewide infrastructure:

Akron and Summit County partnered to buy a 9-1-1 system that displays a cell phone’s number and its location. The system will reduce response times and get help to people who don’t know where they are.

Buying one system to share saved taxpayers about $150,000, Akron spokesman Mark Williamson said, “and maintenance costs will be reduced by as much
as 40 percent by eliminating redundancies.”

Akron’s deputy mayor of public safety, George Romanoski, said the new system, made by AT&T, will be running by late July. It cost about $750,000.

Dispatchers in Cleveland are using an older system that does not give them cell phone numbers or locations.

And while I’m at it: Yo – Cuyahoga County Commissioners – you think hundreds of thousands of visitors to a medical mart and convention center, travelers with their cellphones, will want to be in a city that has an antiquated wireless 911 system? Safety is a person’s biggest concern when they travel to cities you know.

Okay – and a last thing: could SB 117 tie this issue in, and make AT&T and other similar providers toss in money for wireless assistance? Seems to me like there might be something in there for that?

4 thoughts on “Local progress on wireless 911; Statehouse loving home rule w/this issue because of infrastructure cost?

  1. Funny, the first thing I thought when I saw this today was: while CuyCo’s commissioners bicker about tax increase without consent, SumCo/Akron is spending 3/4 million keep residents and visitors safe.But I’m certain with all that med mart driven tax revenues, CuyCo can implement a similar plan by 2015 or so.

  2. Kyle – you are soooo not alone. And, sadly, many of those who are in your situation are elderly or infirm or the poor, who need the services the most because they often don’t have health insurance and need the ER services. It’s a real cluster from everything I’ve read. And true, not only in Ohio, but why oh why oh whyoh does it always seem like it’s also in Ohio!?

  3. Many of my peers who have apartments or have bought their first homes don’t have land lines anymore. I am one of those people and never thought about what impact having a wireless phone would have on emergency response to my residence.Informative post. Thanks Jill.

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