LA-RICS Uses Public-Safety LTE During Tournament of Roses Parade
Thursday, February 16, 2017 | Comments

The Los Angeles Regional Interoperable Communications System (LA-RICS) helped 1,500 public-safety officers from the city of Pasadena and the county of Los Angeles patrol and secure the Tournament of Roses Parade route by blending new technologies with trusted radio systems.

LA-RICS covers most of Los Angeles County with a broadband network supporting 74 Long Term Evolution (LTE) communications sites. The public-safety broadband network provides police, fire and emergency response agencies with secure and rapid data transmission for video, pictures, two-way voice communications, and other software applications that improve situational awareness.

The LA-RICS LTE system complements its new LMR infrastructure to provide a dynamic network solely for public safety, helping to keep citizens and first responders safe. High-definition camera feeds, broadband-equipped handheld devices and software applications worked together to enable improved information sharing and communications through voice, data, pictures and video, a Motorola Solutions statement said.

“We saw outstanding performance from the LA-RICS system at the Rose Parade this year, helping a broad coalition of public-safety responders do their jobs more efficiently,” said John Radeleff, interim executive director for the LA-RICS Authority. “The long parade route, large crowds and high-profile event provide a unique challenge for public safety, and this network served as a key asset to help public safety fulfill its mission to keep the 750,000 attendees safe.”

The deployment for the 5.5-mile parade route included both fixed and mobile video cameras, which were monitored at mobile command stations and a central operations center. Officers used 100 handheld broadband-enabled devices at the event to help monitor video feeds, share pictures and text, and see location data for personnel and equipment. The advanced technology enabled a push-to-talk (PTT) function, which allowed responders to talk directly with each other regardless of which voice radio or data device was used.

The system moved 359 Gigabytes of information during the parade event, which began Jan. 1 and concluded Jan. 2, an increase from the 2016 parade’s 294 Gigabytes, a 22 percent increase, in the same time frame. The dedicated broadband network experienced top data speeds at all times and provides a functioning model for the planned nationwide public-safety broadband network in planning stages by the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet).

Public-safety agencies participating in the 2017 parade detail included the Pasadena Police Department, Pasadena Fire Department, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, Los Angeles County Fire Department, Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), California Highway Patrol, California Department of Transportation, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and other public-safety entities and utilities.

The LA-RICS vendors who contributed to the deployment were Jacobs Engineering, Motorola Solutions, BlackHawk Imaging, Sonim Technology, Intrepid Networks, ESChat by SLA, Parallel Wireless, Pepro, Airship, Airwave Communications and Milestone Video Management Systems.

LA-RICS is a joint powers authority formed and operated by the county of Los Angeles and 23 municipalities in the county. It is a network of 74 fixed and mobile transmission towers that allow data such as video, photos, maps and medical data to be shared by first responders, emergency services personnel and hospitals in Los Angeles County. Construction continues on the LMR portion of the system that will include 61 communications sites across Los Angeles County. It will replace an aging system, improving interoperable communications between agencies during large-scale emergencies.

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