MCP Insights

Public Safety Drones are Worth Pursuing, Despite the Challenges

Posted on May 3, 2019 by Glenn Bischoff

The concept of drones—also known as unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) or unmanned aerial systems (UAS)—dates back to August 1849 when Austrian soldiers attacked the city of Venice with hot-air balloons filled with explosives. The campaign largely was unsuccessful; in fact, ill winds blew many of the balloons back toward the soldiers who launched them.

Nearly a century later, in 1944 during World War II, Japan embarked on the little-known Fu-Go campaign that involved launching about 9,000 balloons laden with incendiary bombs; the balloons were supposed to waft across the Pacific Ocean and then start forest fires in the western United States to spark panic amongst the citizenry. This campaign also was unsuccessful.

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The Critical Role of Standards for NG911 Implementation

Posted on April 19, 2019 by John Chiaramonte

Throughout the design, development, and implementation of Next Generation 911 (NG911), one fundamental requirement has remained true: to achieve interoperability across the entire public safety communications ecosystem, NG911 implementations must adhere to a standard. For many years now, the 911 community has agreed that the NG911 standard is the National Emergency Number Association’s (NENA) Detailed Functional and Interface Standards for the NENA i3 Solution[1], commonly known as "NENA i3."

The first version of the standard, NENA 08-003, was ratified in June 2011. Since then, the standard was renumbered as NENA-STA-010.2-2016 when it was last updated in 2016. Later this year, NENA plans to revise the standard yet again expects American National Standards Institute (ANSI) ratification once again.

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Life at MCP: Meet Heather McGaffin

Posted on March 14, 2019 by Morgan Sava

Our people and culture make Mission Critical Partners (MCP) a great place to work. Our "Life at MCP" series introduces our team members, the role they play in our organization and their passion for helping the public safety industry thrive.

One thing that differentiates the team of specialized professionals at MCP is the fact that many of them came from the “other side.”

Nearly half of MCP’s subject matter experts were former public safety answering point (PSAP) managers or first responders who have dedicated their entire career to supporting the mission. With them comes specialized industry experience and a unique perspective on what clients really want in order to realize project success.

One such example is Heather McGaffin. Heather is a Communications Consultant at MCP, where she works primarily on next generation 911 (NG911) projects. With her comes the operational experience she’s earned from rising up the ranks in the PSAP environment. Her career began as a telecommunicator and she quickly rose to the role of assistant chief of communications in a Maryland PSAP where she worked until she joined MCP in 2015. Today, she plays a unique part in helping clients along their NG911 journey—focusing on the human aspect of NG911, which includes training and continuing education so that telecommunicators and PSAP administrators can thrive in an NG911 environment.

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A Call to Action: 911 Data Sharing

Posted on January 23, 2019 by Gordon Vanauken

In a previous article on MCP Insights, we discussed in length how data will be king in public safety’s incredibly exciting new era. The torrent of rich data that is beginning to enter into 911 centers promises to have a profound impact on emergency response—but only if its harnessed effectively.

For the 911 community to realize the full value of data, several critical elements must be in place. One of those is a data management and sharing environment that provides useful and sustainable standards, requirements, and guidance. Not only must this environment support day-to-day 911 service delivery today, it must be flexible enough to support the industry’s future, next-generation data needs as well.

With today’s legacy 911 environment—which consists of localized, siloed systems—overcoming this significant hurdle will be difficult, but one that MCP believes not only is attainable, but also imperative.

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MCP's Top Eight Public Safety Predictions for 2019

Posted on January 10, 2019 by Morgan Sava

What trends are expected to disrupt the public safety sector in 2019?

For 911 and emergency response organizations, it has never been more critical to stay ahead of the curve. In this post, Mission Critical Partners' (MCP) subject-matter experts offer their take on the advancements that will have the greatest impact on public safety’s transformation this year.

1. 5G Will Significantly Expand, Opening the Door for Transformative Capabilities that are Limited Today by Wireless Bandwidth.

Dave Sehnert, Director of Innovation and Integration (Twitter: @NG911Consultant)

“5G is expected to expand in 2019 beyond its current limited deployment, and the first wave of smartphones for 5G networks also is expected this year. 5G technology offers speeds that are 10–20 times faster than 4G LTE, and latency is reduced to a few milliseconds. 5G’s impact extends to public safety and other fields that increasingly rely on high-speed connections. Last year, one wireless carrier announced the creation of a 5G First Responder Lab that will serve as an incubator and testing ground for innovative technologies that use 5G and can be deployed for public safety use cases. With 5G, public safety communications finally will benefit from a full spectrum of new and increasingly prevalent technologies, such as sensors, wearables, smartphones, smart buildings, facial-recognition systems and drones, to name a few. The integration of data from these applications into the emergency response ecosystem will create increased situational awareness, reduced response times, and ultimately, the potential for more lives saved.”

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