Vancouver – The City of Coquitlam has become the ninth municipality within Metro Vancouver to have all of its emergency services on the region’s shared radio system.
The communications link was established following the transition of Coquitlam Fire & Rescue to the E-Comm radio system February 4. A key feature of this transition for Coquitlam Fire & Rescue is the ability to communicate with other emergency agencies, both within Coquitlam and in neighbouring jurisdictions. Coquitlam RCMP and the BC Ambulance Service have been on the radio system since 2000.
“The interoperability feature is a primary reason for us to move to E-Comm’s wide area radio system,” says Assistant Chief Kelly Barber of Coquitlam Fire & Rescue. “Emergency agencies using this system in and around our area (Burnaby, Port Moody, New Westminster and Port Coquitlam) can now share vital information with us—enhancing safety and response for our community.
“Better radio reception and having an emergency alert button on the radios has also made a substantial improvement to our own firefighter safety. Effective and reliable communications is our lifeline at an emergency incident.”
Coquitlam Fire & Rescue has been outfitted with 35 mobile vehicle units, 55 portable radios for the firefighters and two dispatch consoles.
E-Comm President Ken Shymanski adds, “I am delighted that Coquitlam Fire & Rescue chose to join the region’s radio network. Coquitlam Fire is a very progressive organization and through the system’s interoperability capabilities, they are now an even greater ally with their counterparts in neighboring communities to ensure public safety.”
In addition to being able to communicate with other fire departments, ambulance and police agencies; the E-Comm radio system offers enhanced safety features of better in-building coverage (which is extremely important to firefighting safety) and increased clarity and reliability, with higher peak traffic capacity than Coquitlam’s previous system.
In total, 14 police agencies, BC Ambulance Service and nine fire departments throughout southwest British Columbia operate with E-Comm’s radio system, with more than 6,000 wide-area radios. The E-Comm network processes approximately 10 million radio transmissions each month.
E-Comm is the regional emergency communication centre for southwest British Columbia. E-Comm provides 9-1-1, radio and dispatch communications services and support systems to emergency responders and the more than two million residents they serve. www.ecomm911.ca
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Senior Communications Specialist