CASE STUDY | omnicore Radio Dispatch System

omnicore Radio Dispatch System Connecting Agencies Across the County

Nestled in the picturesque Appalachians with breathtaking views of lush green mountains, fish-filled streams and endless trails for hiking and biking, Perry County’s 28,400 citizens are known for true country hospitality and a rich history rooted in coal and lumber industries.

At the heart of it all lies Hazard, the city seat bustling with activity. Main Street is home to vital agencies like the Perry County E-911 Center, coordinating dispatch for one paid and 12 Volunteer Fire Departments, Perry County Ambulance Authority, law enforcement including Perry County Sheriff’s Department, Hazard Police, and the Kentucky State Police-Post 13.

In times of crisis, these agencies come together for a coordinated multi-agency response across state, city, and county lines under the guidance of dedicated dispatchers. In Perry County alone First Responsers have 373 square miles to cover, so it’s no surprise that Perry County’s dispatchers work tirelessly in 12-hour shifts, 24/7/365, with 2-3 dispatchers per shift, to ensure seamless communication at all times.

Customer Profile

County E-911 Center

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Application

  • Public Safety Communications
  • Inter-agency Response Management

Products Used

  • omnicore Express Dispatch System
  • IPR100 Analog VoIP and SIP Gateways
  • IPR110+ Analog RoIP Gateways

Upgrading

The Challenge

Their existing pushbutton analog system was legacy, a product from the 1990s which caused frequent issues for the dispatchers such as channel card outages and it had even short circuited.

A true concern for the Center as their communication system was becoming unreliable.

Lacking screens, channel names were indicated by plaques with a separate clock used by dispatchers to give time. Where the Sheriff’s department uses Kenwood VHF radios, the volunteer firefighters all bring their own radios and thereby a mix of vendors.

In multi-agency incidents, dispatchers had no way to communicate with Hazard PD or Kentucky State Police and other agencies except through phones.

Moreover, the dispatchers were unable to identify who was talking during multiple channel activity, they had no way of knowing what they missed without asking the transmitters to repeat.

Video

Perry County, Kentucky

System Selection

Requirements

Kentucky State Police recently upgraded to the cutting-edge P25 statewide 700MHz trunking network, while Perry County first responders were still using analog VHF radio networks.

To improve communication, coordination, and interoperability between agencies, the Perry County E-911 team realized the crucial need to improve Emergency Communications for their dispatchers and first responders. Assistant Director Diane Napier-Scarberry sought approval from the Perry County 911 Board and Director Danny Miller to do a grant which was funded through the Kentucky 911 Services Board.

With their full consent, Diane became the Project Manager and overseer of this important task. Even though she had been in Public Safety for 24 years- doing
thorough research of requirements for a P25 System was a must and all the while keeping the team updated, they sought a radio dispatch console capable of handling both digital P25 and analog transmissions. They prioritized features like caller identification, touchscreens for dispatchers, call playback for missed traffic, and the ability to easily add new channels as needed.

Despite the grant’s limited funds, Diane successfully procured the government grant from Kentucky 911 Services Board for a new cost-effective yet feature-rich solution for their upgrade project.

Case Study

omnicore Dispatch Analog & Statewide P25 Interoperability

Perry County E-911 Center, Kentucky

Future-Proof

The Solution

To ensure they were getting the best system for their needs, Perry County had to request two or more vendors for bid quotes regarding the grant guidelines. The Perry County E-911 Team wanted at least three communication vendors for a competitive bid; so far they could only find two radio communication vendors.

Consequently, after spending a day at the Leslie County, Kentucky E-911 Center, who had been successfully using an Omnitronics dispatch solution for six months, Perry County E-911 Directors were impressed by the functionality, features, and price point of the omnicore Dispatch Management System.

Diane made contact with Tri-State Electronics the very next day because the 911 Team wanted to discuss the omnicore Dispatch Management System in depth and Tri-State came over and did an in house evaluation which took in consideration Perry County E-911 needs for the upgraded radio system as well as budgetary needs.

Ultimately the system was installed by Tri-State Electronics, comprising of 3 licenses for the omnicore Express dispatch console installed on common off-the-shelf PCs with touchscreen monitors. In addition, they use 2 x IPR100 VoIP & SIP gateways and 8 x IPR110+ gateways were used to communicate with all first responder radio channels in and around Perry County.

Even though Perry County has 23 dispatchers on their team, only 3 licenses are needed as these float between users and only the total number of concurrently logged on users require to be licensed, a significant cost saving compared to other vendor’s dispatch systems. If they were to move to a backup dispatch center, they could log in with the same three licenses at no added cost.

The Perry County E-911 Center is now seamlessly connected with all local agencies, enabling communication on both their analog VHF channels, Hazard P25 channels and the state-wide P25 trunked 700 MHz network.

In the future they are looking to implement channel patching for improved coordination during multi-agency incidents. A game-changer for their team’s safety, efficiency, and response to emergencies!

Testimonial

The E-911 Director LOVES omnicore

“Timesaving on calls is amazing! […] {omnicore Dispatch} identifies who is talking, we’ve got the playback features and it’s helping our community a lot!

Everything we have seen {in omnicore}, we love!”

Danny Miller

Perry County E-911 Director

Getting to Know the System

Training

Omnitronics Premium Partner Tri-State trained both the E-911 Director and the Assistant E-911 Directors and they were able to quickly pick up how to use and administer the system. Their easy-to-use system allowed them to quickly grasp its operations and pass on this knowledge to their dispatchers.

“The [Tri-State Electronics] technicians that put the system in were extremely helpful!
They showed us step by step […] all these different features that {the system} gave us. They […] told us everything that we needed to know. And, the dispatchers [with] more experience have passed it on to the new hires that we’ve had.”

Gavin Bowen

Perry County Dispatcher

The Dispatch Solution

Network Diagram

Safety & Productivity

Conclusion

Perry County may in the future need to expand their dispatch operations into other surrounding counties.

With the easy-to-use touchscreen interface, they feel it would help them quickly bring on more dispatchers in the future. Should they need to expand their channel count and dispatch from multiple locations, that can also easily be achieved with omnicore dispatch.

We thank our Partner Tri-State Electronics for the successful installation, training and the ongoing maintenance of the system.

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