‘I didn’t join the fire service to troubleshoot old tablet PCs,’ says Mark Goodfellow, Crew Manager at Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service. He spoke and it seems that the Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service listened. Ahead of this winter, the Cornish fire service retired its older, slower mobile devices and replaced them with new, faster, ruggedised and thereby futureproof, mobile tablets.
With a large beat that covers 3,563 square kilometres, the Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service cannot afford any delays or interruptions. ‘A lot of our firefighters are on call,’ explains Goodfellow. ‘So, you already have to factor in the time it takes them to get to the station and get kitted up. Any delay on top of that can stop us responding as quickly as we want to. We just can’t tolerate it.’
This year, the Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service announced that it was working with Airwave Solutions in order to upgrade its crews to faster, modernised mobile tablet devices, tailored by Motorola Solutions to meet the rigorous demands of UK Fire and Rescue Services. That includes being fully compliant with the latest specifications required of fire services.
The terminals Cornwall’s firefighters used previously were several years old, and frustratingly, they did not run the latest software, and were often slow to respond, despite the critical time element and urgency of the firefighters’ day-to-day roles.
‘What we’ve found,’ explains Goodfellow, ‘is that our crews don’t always have access to the best information available as fast as they need it. And they’re often faced with the frustration of trying to coerce old devices to work, when they want to concentrate on the job at hand. Fortunately, so far this hasn’t led to any negative outcomes for any of the people who rely on us. But Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service has no intention of waiting around for that to happen before we do something. That’s why we’re partnering with Motorola Solutions to upgrade our mobile devices to the new MTD3 devices and integrate those devices into our operations now.’
With the new tablets, firefighters will be able to get the data they need, fast. That helps them be more effective, meaning they spend less time with the technology to get the results they need, and it also improves their safety. The MTD3 gives full access to the crash rescue database and other relevant services, helping support their roles and reduce technical challenges or frustrations.
The devices are configured to automatically push relevant information to crews on the ground as soon as that information becomes available.
‘We’re excited to be partnering with Motorola Solutions and Airwave on this upgrade,’ says Goodfellow. ‘We expect this to make us more responsive, to help us collect the data we need to make our service more efficient and cost effective, to help us keep the public safe and, frankly, to improve the daily working lives of our men and women.’
For more information, go to www.airwavesolutions.co.uk/mdt3/