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Upgraded emergency radio system ready to go


Testing begins today on Indiana County’s new public safety radio system, as officials from the county’s emergency management agency and Motorola drive the county’s roadways to measure signal strength. 


The $16 million system uses fourteen towers and is part of a new regional system integrated with Armstrong and Westmoreland counties.  County officials hope to achieve a 95 percent communication success rate over 95 percent of the county, a dramatic increase over the current estimate of 60 percent success over 65 percent of the county.


The new radio system will eventually be used by police, fire, medical, and other first responders, who will discard their old low-band and high-band VHF radios in favor of new 800 megahertz digital radios.


In addition to the new emergency radio capabilities, the county also installed 88 miles of fiber optic line to connect some of the towers and increase future options such as internet, TV, and telephone service.  Seven of the towers are hooked up to the fiber optic line and the other seven use microwave connections.   

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