How Technology Is Improving Public Safety

 Mar 24, 2017   |    Black Box

New equipment is helping public safety professionals make better decisions faster.

Technology plays a crucial role in the life-saving work of public-safety access points. Improved technology can help 911 operators respond to emergencies faster and more effectively. Our recent Public Safety State of Technology Survey examines current industry trends and the need for technology that can streamline operations, improve services and increase response time.

State of the Industry

More than 130 professionals from public-safety access points participated in the survey. The majority indicated they have fewer than ten workstations and serve populations under 250,000 people. Most operators are responsible for dispatching response teams in addition to taking calls. The survey suggests emergency response professionals wear many hats and that efficiency is critical in their line of work.

Device Overload

Operators often work with multiple screens, keyboards and mice. They also manage as many as ten applications at one time. This setup requires physically switching back and forth from various keyboards and mice to manage a situation. Operators lose precious time navigating their equipment. What’s more, 78 percent of computers are located near the workstation, adding heat and noise to an already tense environment.

Upgrading to high-performance KVM switches allows operators to control additional monitors from one keyboard and mouse, saving time and displaying more information at once. With KVM extension, computers can be located in a secure closet away from the workstation. Implementing computer-aided dispatch further streamlines operations and increases response time.

The Value of Texting

Only 33 percent of surveyed PSAPs are using text-to-911, with another 21 percent planning to implement it within the next year. That still leaves half of 911 centers without the ability to text people in situations where it might be too dangerous to place a call.

Fewer Screens, More Real-Time Data

To make the best decisions, public safety professionals need as much real-time information as possible in a centralized location. A video wall is a clear solution to meet this need, yet over half of those surveyed currently do not have a video wall in their call center. Those who do have this technology have a fewer number of screens.

Comprehensive video wall solutions offer real-time visualization and information sharing between the field and operations centers. Touchscreens also make it easier for operators to transmit their screens to the main wall for improved collaboration.

Quality Equipment Is Everything

Upgrading technology in emergency operations centers, 911 call centers, command centers, and public-safety access points increases situational awareness and mission-critical reliability. Whether it’s  additional screens, KVM switches, video walls, or remote-monitoring solutions, Black Box technology helps public safety professionals make better decisions faster.

Get the free eBook Emergency Call Centers: State of the Industry to view the full survey results and explore solutions to your technology pain points.

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