Florida Tri-County Regional System Deploys Text to 9-1-1
Monday, March 06, 2017 | Comments

A text to 9-1-1 capability went live for Gulf, Franklin and Calhoun counties served by the Tri-County Regional 9-1-1 system in Florida beginning in May 2016, with the last carrier live on the system July 29. This service provides an alternative method of communicating with emergency service providers for those who cannot safely call 9-1-1, who have a speech disability or who are deaf.

The Tri-County Regional System was the first regional next-generation 9-1-1 (NG 9-1-1) system in operation in the state of Florida. The Solacom system went into operation in July 2011 and has provided efficient, reliable and cost-effective service to the counties within the region, a statement said.

The newly available service fully integrates text call answering within the Solacom user interface — not as a separate program using a web-based application. This integration provides 9-1-1 call-takers with a single interface to handle all call types, enhancing familiarity and ease of use. Statistical information, call history and other system data are tracked within the system similar to a voice call, providing consolidated call information whenever needed.

“Call if you can, text if you can’t,” said Ben Guthrie, 9-1-1 coordinator for Gulf County and Florida 9-1-1 board member. “The counties and public-safety answering points (PSAPs) are proud to be adding this important enhancement to our system. For those living in or visiting our communities who are in a situation where it is either too dangerous to dial 9-1-1 or have a disability that makes it ineffective, this provides another important method to reach public safety.”

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