FirstNet is revolutionizing the delivery of public safety services for all users. Learn how FirstNet is expanding broadband coverage into rural areas that have been traditionally underserved or unserved.
In 2021, the FirstNet Authority delivered its first investments in public safety’s network to help drive a differentiated, dedicated, and enduring network to support first responders. In 2022, the FirstNet Authority will continue to advance public safety communications through close engagement with first responders and expansions in 5G and mission-critical solutions.
Every year, disasters put millions of Americans in danger and cost billions of dollars in property damage. After the threat of harm has passed, FirstNet plays an important role in the recovery phase. While a community is assessing damage, repairing and rebuilding infrastructure, and restoring critical functions, FirstNet keeps responders connected and communicating, speeding up some steps of the recovery process. Cherokee County Emergency Management Agency in Alabama used FirstNet to speed up reporting after disasters.
When Mason County, West Virginia needed broadband for their public safety agencies, they considered many options and ultimately decided to go with FirstNet because of coverage. Now all EMS agencies in this rural county use FirstNet for their communications, making a difference for providers and patients alike, especially when ambulance rides can be 45 minutes to the nearest advanced care hospital.
As vaccines became available, the New Hampshire Department of Safety set up a large vaccination clinic in Loudon. “Go-kits” with cameras, battery packs, routers with FirstNet SIM cards, and other internet-based devices were used to oversee and coordinate the operation, and the ability to stream video footage to unified command was critical to decision-making.
FirstNet has supported New Mexico first responders through many events. From connecting public safety at the Albuquerque International Balloon Festival to covering tribal nations during the pandemic, agencies are experiencing the benefits of their network.
Experts at the Boulder FirstNet Lab in Colorado test functions and features of FirstNet to ensure first responders experience the network as designed and expected. For example, using load test tools, researchers can emulate 6,000 devices and demonstrate how priority and preemption work for first responders.
When hurricanes strike, the main and immediate focus for first responders is rescuing and responding to those in need of aid. Last season, public safety officials relied on FirstNet to sustain and restore emergency communications for many hard-hit communities. FirstNet is critical to our nation’s first responders who battle storms day in and day out – and to those who have placed their confidence into the network’s communications capabilities to keep our communities safe