The State of Massachusetts, with outlined county boarders; a cell tower.

Western Massachusetts First Responders Get Connectivity Boost from New FirstNet Cell Sites

First responders in Western Massachusetts are getting a major boost in their wireless communications with the addition of new, purpose-built cell sites. The sites – located in the communities of Worthington, Hardwick and Huntington – are part of the FirstNet network expansion taking place in Massachusetts, which is bringing increased coverage, capacity and capability to first responders across the state. Plus, the new FirstNet site will give first responders in Western Massachusetts access to the fastest overall network experience.

FirstNet is the nationwide, wireless communications platform dedicated to America’s first responders and public safety community. Mandated by Congress, it’s designed to strengthen and modernize public safety communications, helping first responders connect to the critical information they need – every day and in every emergency. FirstNet is built with AT&T in a public-private partnership with the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet Authority) – an independent agency within the federal government.

To ensure AT&T and the FirstNet Authority are putting coverage and capacity where first responders need it most, the FirstNet build is being done with direct feedback from state and public safety officials.

The site is constructed using Band 14 spectrum, as well as AT&T commercial spectrum. Band 14 is nationwide, high-quality spectrum set aside by the government specifically for FirstNet. We look at Band 14 as public safety’s VIP lane. In an emergency, this band – or lane – can be cleared and locked just for FirstNet subscribers. Band 14 has also been added on existing sites across Massachusetts.

“FirstNet is a dedicated broadband platform for public safety, by public safety,” said FirstNet Authority CEO Edward Parkinson. “We worked hand-in-hand with Massachusetts’ public safety community to understand their needs for the network. And this cell site is a prime example of how that input and feedback is becoming reality. We look forward to supporting Western Massachusetts’ first responders’ use of FirstNet to help them save lives and protect communities.”

In addition to further elevating public safety’s connected experience in support of their emergency response, the new sites will also help improve the overall coverage experience for AT&T wireless customers in Western Massachusetts. Residents, visitors and businesses can take advantage of the AT&T spectrum bands, as well as Band 14 when additional capacity is available.

“Massachusetts’ first responders deserve reliable coverage across the state to help them effectively and efficiently address incidents. And with FirstNet, that’s exactly what they’re getting,” said Patricia Jacobs, President, AT&T Northern Region. “We couldn’t be more pleased to support the public safety mission and bring the state’s first responders – and residents – greater access to the connectivity they need.”

For more about the value FirstNet is bringing to public safety, check out FirstNet.com.

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