Charlotte Fire Department is responsible for fire protection of close to 800,000 people living in a 300 square-mile area in and around Charlotte, North Carolina. In fiscal year 2014, Internationally Accredited Agency responded to more than 103,000 calls for service.
Within the CFD is the Communications Division known as “Alarm”. In FY 2014 Fire Communications Division answered nearly 200,000 calls and dispatched more than 103,470 incidents. A part of the Communications Division is the Tactical Communications Team. This team provides communications support in the field throughout the city of Charlotte, the region, state and nation. This team has been in existence since 2006 and has responded to multiple hurricanes, natural disasters, special events, and incidents throughout the state.
The Tactical Communications Team has two field communications units and two mobile command units that bring connectivity, radio technology, computers, cameras, cable TV, HAZMAT monitoring, video teleconferencing and surveillance capability and more to any scene. These four vehicles include Field Comm 1, Field Comm 2, Mobile Command 1, and Mobile Operations Center (MOC).
Field Comm 1, built by PEAKE of Maryland, is a rapidly deployable mobile communications vehicle used to provide essential communications throughout a deployment. This vehicle is typically the first to arrive on-scene providing comms support. Field Comm 1 was built on a Suburban chassis and features 8 Radios (UHF, VHF, 800), VSAT Terminal with PEAKE Tactical-IP service, IP-phones (mobile and fixed), Pan-Tilt-Zoom camera, ACU-1000 radio interoperability solution, MSAT G2 phones, PEAKE Outrigger, an amateur radio, and much more. The Field Comm 1 unit has two seats in the rear area for operations.
The CFD Tactical Communications team gets a lot of use out of the Field Comm 1 unit. You can see more about their various deployments on their Facebook page.
The CFD Mobile Command 1 and Mobile Operations Center provide large-scaled support of response to incidents and events. Mobile Command 1 supports missions for one operation period or less (6-8 hours). The MOC’s mission is to support multi-jurisdictional, multi-agency and/or multi-discipline incidents or events over multiple operational periods and over multiple days. These units can typically be seen deployed weekly during special events in the City of Charlotte including NFL games and Charlotte Raceway events.
PEAKE has provided integration and continues to provide engineering support on both the CFD’s Mobile Command 1 and the Mobile Operations Center.
To learn more about Charlotte Fire “Alarm” visit their website at http://charmeck.org/city/charlotte/Fire/Our%20Organization/Communications/Pages/Default.aspx