Work Begins on $4.2 Million Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) Network
County Executive Joe Parisi announced today that Dane County is implementing a new high-tech computer system to improve coordination and communication between 911 dispatchers and public safety responders. This new Computer Aided Dispatch or “CAD” system will keep track of who needs help where, the status of emergency units responding to calls, and a full accounting of public safety resources as they arrive on the scenes of fire, emergency medical, or police calls.
“This new technology means a more seamless link between our 911 dispatchers and the emergency responders they work with every day to keep our communities safe,” Parisi said. “Moving forward on this project despite difficult times shows the shared value the county board and I place on protecting public safety and continuous improvement in our 911 Center.”
Parisi noted installing the new system will cost the county about $4.2 million. Because of the highly technical nature of the network, the county will also pay around $400,000 annually to operate and maintain the new “CAD.” The County Board and Executive recently approved a contract with “TriTech” to complete design work and move forward on installation of the new system.
“This new ‘CAD’ system is an example of why government matters,” County Board Chair Scott McDonell said. “This is an investment that serves the Dane County community and will help those in need who call 9-1-1 for years to come.”
“This acquisition will bring Dane County 9-1-1 yet another improvement that allows our communicators to be more capable than ever to successfully serve the 9-1-1 caller and help manage the response by law enforcement, fire, or emergency medical responders,” Dane County 911 Director John Dejung said.
The new “CAD” system will essentially be the technological “back-bone” of the Dane County 911 Center. Dispatchers who answer emergency calls will enter information they receive over the phone from 911 callers into “CAD.” The computer network will then sort and deliver that information to dispatchers who talk to police, fire, and emergency medical responders over the radio. This new system will be especially helpful in managing emergency responses to incidents requiring fire, emergency medical or law enforcement resources from a number of communities. An example of this is a large fire that requires firefighting resources from multiple jurisdictions.
Final design work is underway now and Implementation of the new CAD is slated to happen in early 2012. Completing installation of a new “CAD” was one of the recommendations of a 2009 audit done by the county board of the Dane County 911 Center.