Public-Safety Groups Release Cross-Border 9-1-1 Data Sharing Report
Monday, October 01, 2018 | Comments

Two public-safety groups — one in the U.S. and one in Canada — released a joint report on sharing 9-1-1 data across the border.

The National Public Safety Telecommunications Council (NPSTC) and Canadian Interoperability Technology Interest Group (CITIG) released “Cross Border 9-1-1 Data Sharing: A Guide for PSAPs in the U.S. and Canada.” The report offers recommendations and best practices for management of emergencies requiring coordination with cellular carriers.

About 657,000 calls are received daily by U.S. public-safety agencies via the 9-1-1 network, and 70 percent come from wireless phones. Emergency incidents frequently occur near the border between the U.S. and Canada. It is not uncommon that a 9-1-1 call placed near the international border may result in a wireless telephone signal reaching the cellular tower that is located in another country.

Unintended roaming creates significant problems for public-safety answering points (PSAPs) along the international border. A mobile caller reporting a heart attack located in the Detroit area may reach a Canadian PSAP in Windsor. Likewise, cellular calls reporting a house fire in New Brunswick, Canada, may be answered by a U.S. PSAP in in Maine. These calls must be transferred or relayed to the correct jurisdiction in the other country before law enforcement, fire or EMS services may be dispatched.

The report offers recommended best practices for the management of four types of emergency calls: a roaming caller routed to a visiting country PSAP, a local caller misrouted to another country’s PSAP, third-party caller and nonemergency request for criminal investigative assistance.

The report is here.

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