Today, first responders rely on more than 10,000 separate, incompatible, and often proprietary radio networks to communicate with each other during emergencies. Because they’re not connected on one network, it’s hard, and at times impossible, for emergency responders from different jurisdictions or agencies to communicate and work together to save lives. To help address this challenge, the FirstNet network will be a single, nationwide, interoperable LTE network dedicated to public safety communications.
Emergencies don’t happen only in highly populated areas — which is why reaching rural America is one of FirstNet’s top priorities. FirstNet is addressing rural coverage needs in multiple ways to deploy the network in places where coverage may be difficult. High-power towers can cover more rural space with less total infrastructure, as dan deployable and satellite solutions.
FirstNet will carry high-speed data, location information, images, and video that can mean all the difference when seconds count. Just as smartphones have created a new era of real-time information and connectedness for individuals, the FirstNet network, devices and applications will enable the collaboration the public safety community needs to save lives.
During emergencies, public safety needs to be able to communicate without interruption — lives depend on it. It is vital that our nation’s law enforcement officers, firefighters, paramedics and other responders have true priority for their daily and emergency communications needs. This is why FirstNet is deploying a wireless broadband network dedicated to public safety.
Emergencies aren’t the only times when public safety needs capacity to communicate and send data. Planned events — like concerts, festivals, and sporting events — draw crowds to a single location, making it difficult for public safety to get the robust network capacity they need to do their jobs. That’s where FirstNet will help, by providing needed bandwidth to coordinate public safety resources and respond to any incidents.