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Contract wins in UK, Australia as Motorola unveils integrated public safety technology suite

City of London Police, UK Department of Justice and Fire and Rescue New South Wales take on suite of services designed to offer seamless collaboration between frontline teams, vehicles and control rooms

Motorola Solutions has unveiled the technology and services it believes will deliver better outcomes for global public safety agencies as they contend with a number of challenges in delivering their services, announcing a number of contracts with major fire, police and justice services in the UK and Australia.

At Critical Communications World (CCW) 2023 in Helsinki, the tech provider affirmed that its fundamental mission was to provide services that help make communities safer and keep enterprises productive, allowing public safety and defence organisations’ frontline teams to maximise their use of data and communication to make better-informed and safer decisions wherever they are.

It noted that such people were responding to more frequent and intense natural disasters, providing safety and security at borders and maintaining resilience to cyber threats, a job that is becoming more complex with resources constrained and community expectations continuing to rise.

The new offerings unveiled at CCW are said to have been developed with a mobile-first approach to surround and connect frontline officers, operational vehicles, and control rooms.

Connected Officer integrates technologies to enhance frontline workflows while building trust with communities. These include a portfolio of body-worn cameras, including the LTE-enabled V-series, a rugged MXP600 Tetra radio, the MXP7000 Tetra and LTE portable device and PSCore, Motorola Solutions’ mobile policing application.

Connected Vehicle is designed to provide police officers safety and awareness while on patrol, integrating voice, video and software to make patrols safer and officers better informed. Equipped with an in-car video system, providing constant video streaming, real-time alerts and evidence capturing, and integrated with Apple CarPlay intelligent software services, the Connected Vehicle is also attributed with helping officers to manage operational tasks while on the road.

These then work with the Connected Control Room, bringing together mission-critical broadband push-to-talk (PTT) applications to connect teams using different devices on different networks, managing workflows and ensuring information is shared across agencies. The Critical Connect functionality offers interoperability between land mobile radio (LMR) systems, broadband PTT and control room applications to eliminate barriers and unify communications for all responders.

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Intended users for such offerings include organisations such as City of London Police, UK Department of Justice, and Fire and Rescue New South Wales (FRNSW).

FRNSW provides rapid emergency response, firefighting and rescue services to enhance community safety and resilience. It depends on reliable, team-based communication to maintain safety and resilience in every emergency it responds to. Bushfires occur frequently in Australia’s hot and dry climate, with the devastating losses of the 2019-20 bushfire season ultimately leading to a Royal Commission into natural disaster arrangements that provided recommendations to enhance response and resilience to future events.

The organisation has deployed the SmartConnect service to securely extend the coverage and capacity of its mission-critical radio communications. SmartConnect maintains reliable and uninterrupted communication by automatically switching communication channels from LMR networks based on the P25 standard to the best available broadband services.

The service can also roam onto satellites for extended coverage in remote areas. SmartConnect helps to maintain encrypted voice communication at all times, even when switching from LMR to LTE, Wi-Fi and satellite networks. In addition, it is designed to mitigate the risk of communication “dead spots” in places where coverage can suddenly drop, including garages, inside buildings and other built-up city environments.

In the first of two deployments, City of London Police will roll out VB400 body-worn cameras to its entire police force, maintaining safety and security throughout London’s bustling Square Mile, which hosts around 8,000 residents and 513,000 transient commuters who travel in and out of the city each day. The VB400 body-worn cameras will integrate seamlessly with the police force’s existing ecosystem of technologies to maximise end-to-end safety, security and productivity.

Range of sensors

Collaboration with the Pronto mobile digital policing platform will align video footage with other incident report information and connectivity with a wide range of sensors that will automate recording when critical events occur, such as an officer pressing the emergency button on their MXP600 Tetra portable radio.

Motorola Solutions has also been selected to provide 13,000 VB400 body-worn cameras to His Majesty’s Prison and Probation Service officers across England and Wales. By capturing objective video and audio evidence, the deployment will help to enhance officer safety as well as trust and transparency for staff and prisoners alike.

The VB400 body-worn camera offers high-quality video and audio capture and is equipped with an automatic pre-recording capability, helping to ensure there is a record of every interaction from start to finish.

When signing off duty, officers return cameras to their docks, which automatically upload and store the day’s footage to the VideoManager evidence management platform, providing a workflow. The body-camera’s design, wide-angle field of view and 12-hour battery life is said to be able to help prison staff to remain focused on the task at hand while promoting positive behaviour and interaction between staff and prisoners.

“City of London Police is dedicated to ensuring London is a safe and attractive destination, and the body-worn camera roll-out will help our officers continue to serve and protect those who live in, work in and visit the city,” said superintendent Neal Donohoe, City of London Police. “The new video technology will capture valuable incident footage that provides an objective record to promote transparency and accountability while also helping to keep our officers and communities safe.” 

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