KCUR News
9:38 am
Tue August 11, 2009

New Radios To Improve City's Emergency Response

Kansas City, MO – Kansas City emergency responders are looking forward to a new communication system that will let fire, police and ambulance crews talk to each other, and eventually, with units from other neighboring cities. KCUR's Steve Bell reports.

When every second counts, having to have a dispatcher serve as intermediary can be frustrating and time consuming. But that method will end when new interoperable radios are installed in all Kansas City, Missouri emergency response vehicles.

Fire chief Smokey Dyer says the current systems are also beginning to suffer from the difficulties in getting parts for 15 year old electronic gear.

DYER: We can't get replacement parts and we're running on "paper clips and rubber bands" now - AND we'll get the additional enhancements."

Dyer says the new system will ultimately have the capability of communicating direct with response teams from other metropolitan area communities, regardless of which brands of interoperable radios they buy.