New public safety radio system goes live

| 14/02/2019 | 8 Comments
Cayman News Service

Minister Tara Rivers cuts the ribbon to launch the new public safety communications system, with Speaker McKeeva Bush and DPSC Director Julian Lewis (CLICK TO ENLARGE)

(CNS): The new upgraded national Public Safety Radio Communications System became fully operational across all three Cayman Islands when officials flipped the final switch at the West Bay bunker on Wednesday. The upgrade, which began last year, from the old 800 Megahertz radio to the new, modern Motorola P25 system has integrated all public safety radio users on a common platform to enable greater inter-agency collaboration and facilitate more effective and efficient responses, officials said at a ceremony marking the event.

Before cutting the ribbon to declare the station formally open and the installation complete, Home Affairs Minister Tara Rivers said the mission-critical radio system, its infrastructure and accompanying accessories have been successfully implemented at sites in the Government Administration Building, the Citrus Grove Building, Radio Cayman, Northward, Frank Sound, East End, Little Cayman and Cayman Brac East.

Officials explained that one of the essential requirements for the country-wide infrastructure improvement project was to address the long-standing gaps in coverage.

Cayman News Service

Inside the West Bay new radio frequency site (CLICK TO ENLARGE)

Therefore, three new radio frequency sites in West Bay, Frank Sound and in the West End of Cayman Brac were identified for brand new installation locations of the P25 radio system hardware to ensure seamless communications.

Rivers said the opening of the West Bay station marked a critical goal of enhanced capability for all first responders.

“The investment in this country-wide project clearly demonstrates government’s commitment to promoting a safer and more resilient Cayman Islands,” she said. “Now, with the most modern radio system for public safety and emergency communication in the Caribbean, first responders are better equipped than ever before to serve and protect the people of the Cayman Islands, residents and visitors alike.”

Department of Public Safety Communications (DPSC) Director Julian Lewis pointed out that changes to the islands’ infrastructure, such as higher buildings and greater capacity, created challenges for the performance of the original radio system.

“As part of our mission to improve the indoor and outdoor coverage for radio users, a study of the buildings and locations, with important information on radio site placement, was provided to the radio project team in order to ensure the selection of optimal locations for additional and new radio repeater sites,” he said.

Cayman News Service

DPSC Director Julian Lewis

“The system testing and radio user reports have confirmed that the installation of hardware at the three new locations provides excellent radio coverage, that’s stronger than ever before, stretching to all part of the islands.”

Lewis explained that the new technology would enable emergency personnel to communicate and access information quickly, having a direct impact on how first responders execute their missions.

“This upgrade will play an essential role in enhancing service delivery, shortening response times in emergency situations, and efficiently interconnecting all first responders to respond to any type of emergency or large-scale event,” he added.

All public safety agencies have begun replacing their current hand-held radio units with the new next-generation technology, with around 1,000 radios being handed out to first responders during the initial roll-out. DPSC conducted several critical training sessions with the users to customise the radios and ensure they were effective.

The Ministry of Home Affairs signed the agreement with Motorola Solutions on 14 December 2017.

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Comments (8)

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  1. anonymous says:

    Our airport is busier than ever, but does air traffic control have radar yet?

    • be safe says:

      Oh cigov. Still have a s
      Antenna in the middle of the prison. Does anyone who work in DPSC have a brain?

  2. Anonymous says:

    Ohhhh… so MLA Tara Rivers is on island and available!

    Interesting and noted.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Lots of kickbacks, some people pockets are heavy

  4. Anonymous says:

    I had emailed this to Auntie, but want to post it here as well.

    RE: How the “..stronger than ever before..” affects Cayman residents health.

    Today, officials announced about  the most advanced and modern radio system in the Caribbean.

    Communications sources have increased greatly in recent years, and there is continuing change in the frequencies used and variety of applications.

    Studies of health effects of radiofrequency residential exposure, mainly from radio and TV transmitters have been done, especially focusing on leukemia.
    All studies had too many deficiencies to rule out an association. Also, all study the toxic effect of RF on cell by looking at the nuclear genome and DNA damage, NOT one of these studies every considered the other genome in the cell, namely, the mitochondrial genome that creates all of the energy needs in the cell.
    Nevertheless, every scientist believes that RF radiation is safe for humans when this is not true. 

    > The first mobile phone systems were analog and used 450 and 900 MHz.
    > Digital systems, operating at somewhat higher frequencies (1,800–1,900 MHz) and using different modulation techniques, became prevalent in the early 1990s.
    > Currently, the third-generation systems using the Universal Mobile Telecommunication System are being introduced, which will operate in the 1,900–2,200 MHz frequency range.
    Radio and TV transmitters have a large coverage area and therefore operate at relatively high power levels up to about 1 MW. Although these transmitters could generate fairly high fields at ground level, most are not located in heavily populated areas and do not lead to high exposure of the population.

    My questions are:
    > at which frequencies this new advanced radio system operates? It is my understanding that it can now get through concrete buildings as the new system provides coverage to all parts of the territory.
    > What does it do to human cells (see the attached video)?
    > Where radio communication bunkers are located?
    > Had RF exposure been measured in the vicinity of the transmitters and at the distance?
    > Has this new system got Department of Health approval?

    Watch this video showing the aphids on the flower “dance” every time they are shot with RF radiation from an airport radar 14 miles away.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Attention, attention
    All citizens are ordered to report to their District detention centers
    Do not return to your homes
    Do not contact anyone
    Do not use any cellular or GPS devices
    Surrender all weapons at once
    Attention, this way to the camps

  6. Anonymous says:

    This is common P25 Motorola technology that has existed since 2005.

    Great that we have finally joined the 21st Century, but let’s not up-sell our new-found capability to being “the most state-of-the-art in the Caribbean”. Royal Bahamas Police Force have been using this backbone since 2014.

    CI Public’s $6mln price tag/1000 = $6000 per handheld device. It seems, if we checked, that might be the most expensive of Motorola’s contracts ever awarded. One should ask of our crimefighters, how is this unit cost even possible?


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