Firemen to get hi-tech group communication system

The Mumbai Fire Brigade will soon get a hi-tech communication channel in the form of radio trunking system,enabling it to coordinate better in times of disaster.

Written by Express News Service | Mumbai | Published: March 26, 2009 12:18 am

The Mumbai Fire Brigade will soon get a hi-tech communication channel in the form of radio trunking system,enabling it to coordinate better in times of disaster.

The wireless system will allow the firemen to communicate and synchronise with 25 people at a time instead of the existing one-to-one communication.

The civic Standing Committee on Wednesday gave its approval for the purchase of 400 radio trunking devices. Of the total,250 devices will be installed on the fire brigade vehicles while the remaining 150 will be handheld portable devices.

The total cost of the project would be Rs 8.12 crore.

Radio trunking maximises capacity of two-way communication,especially during emergencies. If a disaster strikes,the BMC officials and disaster control team would be able to keep in touch even when other means of communication like telephone fail. It is a reliable system during a disaster,officials said.

Chief Fire Officer P Karguppikar said that the fire brigade currently uses a simple form of wireless walkie-talkie. “We can only communicate on one-to-one basis and cannot make conference calls. This results in delay in decision making during crisis when firemen at the spot requires additional machinery or needs to talk to his senior,” he said.

Mumbai’s high rises and vertical development has reduced the capacity of the existing VHF Simplex Conventional wireless communication system that allows communication from a specific spot especially if the location is surrounded by tall buildings. Firemen often loose contact with other members or the control room,if the position is changed. Radio trunking is based on the principles of analogue voice communication and allows contact with more than one person without having to worry about signal and network.

What’s radio trunking system
It’s a reliable group communication system during a disaster. Based on the principles of analogue voice communication,the two-way wireless communication system allows contact with more than one person at a time. In Mumbai,the system once implemented,will allow the firemen to communicate with 25 people at the time of emergencies.

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