Messaging | 2019-07-26

LA City and Fire Department Select REDCOM to Modernize their Critical Alerting System

Source: The Critical Communications Review | Gert Jan Wolf editor

REDCOM announced that the City of Los Angeles and the LA Fire Department (LAFD) have selected REDCOM to update their fire station alerting communications network system.

Phase one of the new system went live on June 11, 2019. The new system will provide a path forward from an existing REDCOM MSP system that has been in use since the early 1990s and pave the way for the future implementation of new, more modern fire station alerting capabilities.

The current REDCOM MSP system is interfaced with the LAFD’s Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) system and supports the alerting network to all 106 LAFD fire stations. This system has been working reliably for more than two decades, but the city needed to begin the transition to a more modern, high-speed fiber-optic network that could support the Internet-Protocol (IP) in order to make way for a new fire station alerting system. In an effort to reduce cost and lower risk, the LAFD needed a way to keep their existing fire station alerting system operational while moving to an all-IP network.

“REDCOM has a long history of supporting the Los Angeles Fire Department’s fire station alerting communications system, so we’re thrilled to be working with them on this next generation system,” said Dennis Kohlmeier, Business Development Director, Public Safety Markets, REDCOM. “REDCOM is uniquely qualified for this project. Not only are we helping the LAFD to modernize their network, but we’re doing so in a way that maintains interoperability with their current infrastructure.”

Phase one of the Los Angeles Fire Department’s fire station alerting system upgrade involved the installation of two REDCOM HDX systems to act as gateways. This enables the city to keep their existing system, while providing a path to migrate to IP without impacting end-to-end operations.

“We worked closely with REDCOM to figure out how best to transition to an all-IP network. Together we came up with this two-phased approach,” said Scott Porter, CIO Los Angeles Fire Department. “REDCOM is making it possible for us to update the technology for all of our fire stations, in a fiscally responsible manner over multiple years. The solution is the only one that allows us to upgrade our network.

Phase Two of the Los Angeles Fire Department upgrade involves the replacement of the legacy REDCOM MSP system with a fully IP-based REDCOM HDX system, which will enable the Department to continue to enhance its fire station alerting capabilities replacing old analog components in each fire station with new, modern ones. Once the MSP has been replaced and they are fully cut-over, the HDX gateways from Phase One will become part of a redundant backup system.

Phase Two is scheduled to go live in 2020.