Chester County asks: Can you hear clearly?

As teams in multi-antennaed vehicles, armed with hand-held radios, canvass Chester County to do radio coverage checks for the Chester County Department of Emergency Services’ new public safety communication system, the county commissioners got in on the action.

Prem Kumar (from left), project manager for Harris Corporation, explains the field acceptance test process for Chester County’s new public safety communication system to Chester County Commissioners Terence Farrell, Kathi Cozzone and Michelle Kichline.

Prem Kumar (from left), project manager for Harris Corporation, explains the field acceptance radio test process to Chester County Commissioners Terence Farrell, Kathi Cozzone and Michelle Kichline.

Commissioners Terence Farrell, Kathi Cozzone and Michelle Kichline recently visited the Embreeville voice radio tower to take part in the first of 25 field acceptance tests for the new Department of Emergency Services (DES) system. Testing is also taking place at the main 9-1-1 Center in West Chester and the alternate 9-1-1 Center in South Coatesville.

The field acceptance testing focuses on a review of all components of the Harris Voice Radio System housed alongside emergency towers throughout the county. Throughout September, DES is also conducting radio coverage testing to confirm that the public radio service is accessible to all police, fire and emergency medical services first responders throughout the county, said a county press release.

Testing for the radio coverage is occurring at one-quarter and one-half-mile grids to gauge the voice quality of the new radio system.   Robert Kagel, DES director, said the testing has been going well.

When completed, the system will ensure 97 percent radio coverage for first responders. Final system acceptance is scheduled for April 2016.

In February 2013, the Chester County Commissioners signed a $27.4 million contract with Harris Corporation for the purchase, installation, and maintenance of the new emergency radio system. The maintenance provision covers eight years following installation, the release said.

 

 

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