Tetra | Lte | 2022-04-05

ASTRID to Focus on the Future of Police Communications during ASTRID User Days

Source: The Critical Communications Review | Gert Jan Wolf editor

During the upcoming ASTRID User Days, the critical communications network operator will run a full program with the focus on Mobilidata, the role of EENA, warning systems, MONOcam and new police applications through i-Police.

At the ASTRID User Days, to be held on 18 and 19 May 2022 in Louvexpo La Louvière, Belgium critical communication end-users can learn about new technologies that will enable emergency and security services to work more efficiently and safely. 

The world of critical communications is changing rapidly. During the User Days, ASTRID, the operator of the public safety and critical communications network in Belgium will organize various workshops to introduce its users future evolutions in critical communications. During the event, four main themes are covered.

Next Generation Communication focuses on the development of a new mission-critical broadband network for the emergency and security services. In the field of calltaking and dispatching, the emergency centers of the future will offer many more new possibilities. There will also be a renewal of the Blue Light Mobile service, which today guarantees priority voice and data communication on the GSM networks of commercial operators.

ASTRID will also focus on the ASTRID's training offer: which courses are available and how does 'blended learning' — a combination of online and physical lessons — fit into that picture? These four topics are discussed every day in separate workshops, in both Dutch and French language. They continue in the large auditorium of Louvexpo.

Mobilidata – Agency for Roads and Traffic

In collaboration with the research center imec, the Flemish government is launching 'Mobilidata' this year, an application that should guide priority vehicles through traffic more smoothly and safely. This smart technology brings two concrete improvements in the field. Road users will receive a notification via their smartphone that priority vehicles are approaching, so that they can form a rescue lane in time to make room. Intelligent traffic lights will also anticipate the approach of priority vehicles and ensure that the lights turn green as they approach the intersection. This smart technology will shorten approach times and improve road safety for all road users.

EENA – European Emergency Number Association

The European Emergency Number Association (EENA) organizes workshops on various themes at the ASTRID User Days. The first revolves around the emergency number 112. How do the different European countries deal with the calls they receive? And what possibilities does Next Generation 112 offer when connected devices and sensors provide extra data? Another theme is AED, the automated external defibrillator. How can the placement of the devices be better mapped so that valuable time is not lost? And finally, public warning systems, such as BE-alert in Belgium, are examined. By June 2022, all Member States should have such a reporting system in place. What are the best practices in neighboring countries and what technological evolutions are in the pipeline?

MONOcam – Dutch Police

Many traffic accidents are due to the use of mobile phones while driving. But to catch offenders in the act is not easy and requires a great commitment of people and resources. That is why the Dutch police have developed an automatic system that can detect mobile phone use in the car: MONOcam. The technology uses artificial intelligence and can be deployed on a mobile basis. The Dutch police is studying how best to share the software it has developed with other interested services.

I-Police

The police services in Belgium are going through a digital transformation. This revolution has been going on for a number of years and has useful applications. Just think of number plate recognition, the introduction of the Focus app, the digital declaration…

In the future, new applications will be needed to obtain insights and knowledge from the growing mass of data. The i-Police program was recently launched for this purpose. At the ASTRID User Days, program manager Thierry Van Dyck gives an overview of the program's ambitions.