Police Dept. Upgrades to Firetide Wireless Network

— July 20, 2011

Based on the performance of its existing Firetide-based wireless network, the Los Gatos/Monte Sereno Police Department in Los Gatos, Calif., has expanded its network to include a new wireless system for use in its fleet of police cruisers along with Wi-Fi access for the police operations building. The new system delivers greater reliability than any previous network the department has used.

The greatest operational benefit from the wireless network has been the ability to offload video from the police cruisers to the main network in an efficient and expedient manner. In the past, the department had to physically roll out a Cat-5 Ethernet cable on a spool to physically connect the vehicles to the network to be able to download the videos. This system proved to be difficult and time consuming. Police vehicles and even a street sweeper regularly damaged the Cat-5 cable, which meant it had to be replaced on a regular basis. Additionally, the police officers are typically on tight schedules, which in turn meant the video footage was not downloaded as often as needed, causing long download times when they actually found the time to get everything hooked up.
 
With the new Firetide wireless system, every police vehicle is now equipped with a Firetide HotPort 7000 indoor mesh node that transmits data directly to the police station with a single click of a button, saving both time and money over the long run. Beyond the video, data about each vehicle is captured and transmitted along with the video, providing the department with greater insight into every vehicle. The data download includes information from how fast an officer is driving to readouts from crash sensors.
 
In addition to the benefits provided in video offload, when the new police operations building was constructed, it was determined that the most feasible network to include would be one based on wireless technology. As wireless provides a much more cost-effective solution compared to hard-wiring, it also enables the police department to upgrade the system in the future without tearing out the existing wires as is necessary with Cat-5 and Cat 6-based solutions. Beyond the cost and upgrade benefits, the Firetide-based solution provides fiber-like performance with full Ethernet compatibility, offering seamless integration to the existing wired infrastructure.
 
“The Firetide mesh solution was a breeze to install, configuring seamlessly into our existing network,” says John Zore, network administrator for the Los Gatos/Monte Sereno police department. “We were blown away by the blazing fast speed we could get across the wireless network. Beyond that, we are very happy that we no longer need to roll out cables to police cruisers; now the officers only need to hit a button when they come back to the station and everything is offloaded automatically.”
 
“The Town of Los Gatos is a prime example of how easy it is to get up and running with a Firetide-based network. We provide the flexibility and performance needed for many real-world deployments, from Wi-Fi access to video surveillance,” says Bo Larsson, CEO of Firetide. “The Firetide wireless family has unmatched performance, making our offerings one of the only solutions on the market that is a true alternative to fiber-based networks in a cost-effective manner.”

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