Alabama Joins First Responders Network
Communication is key in an emergency, now Alabama’s first responders have access to a new tool that will help them better serve the community. Governor Kay Ivey announced Tuesday that Alabama is now the 24th state to join the first responder network.
The goal of the First Responders’ Network, or ‘FirstNet’, is to provide a communications network available to use by first responders in times of crisis. It was first established by congress after a recommendation from the 9-11 commission.
“We know on September 11, 2001 412 first responders lost their lives and in some cases it was due to they couldn’t get through because the networks were jammed because of the high volumes of traffic” said Ivey.
FirstNet will now give first responders in Alabama priority wireless services during natural disasters or planned events. Montgomery County Sheriff Derrick Cunningham says that in a field where communication is key, First Net will be a big asset to local law enforcement communities. He explained “so when we pick up the telephone and we call , they know that we’re going to bump somebody else off the system , so that we’re able to communicate back with dispatch because it may be a life or death situation.”
Alabama’s use of FirstNet is apart of a partnership AT&T, the company will to build, operate and maintain network in the state for the next 25 years. FirstNet will be available to first responders at no additional cost to the state.