From the Inner Harbor in Baltimore today, Gov. Martin O’Malley contacted state police and local government officials at Pikesville, Cecil County, the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, and Kent County on the Eastern Shore when he made the first call on the Maryland First Responders Interoperable Radio System Team, or “Maryland FiRST.” The new system was designed and installed by Motorola Solutions, Inc. (MSI).
Maryland FiRST will provide state agencies and local jurisdictions access to a digital and secure radio system for emergency communications. Most existing public safety radio systems in the state will be compatible with Maryland FiRST, which will help Gov. O’Malley accomplish his primary homeland security goal of establishing a seamless, interoperable communications system to connect Maryland’s first responders.
The initial phase of Maryland FiRST, serving central Maryland and the I-95 corridor, will be fully operational by the end of the year when testing and user training are completed. The system will serve all parts of Maryland within four years.
- Maryland First Responders Interoperable Radio System Team, or “Maryland FiRST,” is the first interoperable statewide 700 MHz radio communications system in Maryland for state and local public safety agencies.
- The Maryland FiRST system features P25 Phase 2 TDMA that will enable the Maryland Transportation Authority Police and Kent County to meet the narrowbanding requirements established by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) before the Jan. 1, 2013, deadline.
- The Maryland Transportation Authority, Maryland State Police and Kent County will be the first users of Maryland FiRST.
- Motorola Solutions was awarded a contract from the state of Maryland to begin the design and installation of a statewide interoperable emergency communications network on Nov. 17, 2010.
- The first phase of Maryland FiRST, providing coverage in central Maryland, including the I-95 corridor, will be fully operational by the end of 2012 when testing and user training are completed. This initial phase will provide coverage to serve one-third of Maryland's estimated population of nearly 6 million and two-thirds of the state’s critical infrastructure.
- Maryland FiRST will provide a high level of interoperability to state and local agencies, as well as connectivity to federal agencies through national shared frequencies.
- The next phase will build-out the system on the Eastern Shore and be completed by the end of 2013.
- Maryland FiRST will be completed by 2016, allowing the capability for all Maryland police, firefighters, emergency medical services (EMS), emergency management personnel and other first responders to communicate on the same system.
Martin O’Malley, governor, state of Maryland
"All of the radios that our police officers and firefighters carry should enable them to communicate with other jurisdictions or departments, not only during large-scale emergencies, but also for basic, daily operations. By building Maryland FiRST, we are making great progress toward this critical goal of interoperability for our public safety agencies. Our first responders deserve modern communications equipment to perform their jobs in the safest and most effective way possible."
Mark Moon, executive vice president of Sales and Field Operations, Motorola Solutions, Inc.
“Helping our federal, state and local government customers achieve maximum interoperability is a high priority for Motorola Solutions. We are pleased to work with the state of Maryland to establish Maryland FiRST and create a fully digital and secure radio system that enables police and other first responders to react quickly and effectively in emergencies. First responders will rely on Maryland FiRST to complete their missions, and Motorola is committed to providing the dependable communications they need.”
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