North Carolina County to Analyze Voice Network Upgrade (5/6/13)
Monday, May 06, 2013 | Comments

Orange County, N.C., selected Federal Engineering (FE) to develop a plan to upgrade the county’s emergency radio communications system and its entire supporting infrastructure.

Orange County Emergency Services issued a request for proposals (RFP) to contract with a firm to perform research and provide recommendations for a system upgrade plan. The county will use the results of these recommendations to develop budget requests for system improvements beginning in fiscal year 2013 – 2014. FE has successfully completed multiple programs in North Carolina, a statement said.

Orange County has operated as a subscriber/manager of the North Carolina State Highway Patrol’s (NCSHP) Voice Interoperability Plan for Emergency Responders (VIPER) since 2009. Because of recent additions of more than 350 users, system congestion has increased, indicating a need for additional capacity. Further, signal strength and coverage are not optimal, often resulting in dropped calls or poor reception in areas throughout the county.

The current system design dates back to 2003 and is in need of an upgrade. FE will collect information from the county, NCSHP VIPER, stakeholders and third parties regarding the existing radio infrastructure. FE will document user requirements and collect usage data and conduct research into certain geographical areas, urban structural interference and other anomalies negatively affecting transmission and reception. The company will perform data analysis on the information gathered and provide recommendations for new tower siting, construction, system upgrades and system redundancy to ensure that coverage and capacity requirements are met. The new radio plan will address system upgrades to accommodate additional users through the 2025, said Ronald F. Bosco, FE president.

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