Upgrades continue to benefit police, fire, EMS

Dave Lein, Editor

Photo by Dave Lein

Antrim County Sheriff’s Department Recreation Deputy Scott Boni uses a Mobile Computer Terminal to check the status of a case. MCTs are currently installed in 12 sheriff’s department cruisers, along with multiple fire and emergency vehicles throughout the county. Additional units are scheduled for installation in local village police cars this spring and summer.


BELLAIRE – Faster, smarter and more efficient.

A project that began last summer is nearing completion and area law enforcement officers, along with fire and emergency personnel, couldn’t be happier.

But, actually, it’s the residents served by those professionals that should be the happiest, even if they never have to see or experience the service they helped pay for.

What is that service? Well, in reality it includes multiple services – all working together – thanks to a network of Mobile Computer Terminals, or MCT for short.

Funded through the county’s 911 millage, a series of equipment and overall system improvements have been purchased, installed and implemented over the last year – with testing beginning last July. That process is continuing this spring and summer with additional installations and testing at the village and township level.

“Essentially, in the past, there was a lot of running around, radio communication back and forth, return trips to fill out paperwork, more stops to review files, and so on,” said Antrim County Sheriff’s Office Dispatch Sergeant Michael Gank, who oversees the county’s Central Dispatch operations.

“With the MCTs in the emergency vehicles – and the use of one shared system between central dispatch, the sheriff’s department, prosecutor’s office, local fire/rescue and ambulance services, and village police departments – everything is streamlined. Each department has access to what they need to do their job, immediately. And the system is set up to be geared specifically for certain departments with built-in security access/restrictions.”

As the equipment and system have come online, Gank said the last 10 months of testing have helped iron out most ancillary issues, while allowing additional tweaks to be made as needs or situations arise.

“Any time you are implementing something new to replace multiple other systems, there will be challenges – along with opportunities – to achieve exactly what’s needed,” he explained. “So, as we move to this next phase of getting the villages, townships and other emergency services throughout the county up to speed, there is constant communication between central dispatch and the county’s IT department.”

And so far, the process is going well.

Read the full story in our regular edition of The Review. To subscribe to the paper for just $34 a year, which includes access to our full online e-edition, please go to the subscription page on this website at: http://www.antrimreview.net/subscribe/



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