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Live Roll Out of ANGEN Begins

Date: 2013-10-29
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New 9-1-1 call routing solution designed to streamline network operations, reduce costs and improve redundancy vs. legacy 9-1-1 systems

The Alabama Next Generation Emergency Network (ANGEN) has begun its live roll out. The first calls were completed at the Etowah County public safety answering point (PSAP) on September 30th, with the Dothan County PSAP following on October 2nd. ANGEN's new 9-1-1 call routing solution is designed to streamline the network, reduce costs and improve redundancy when compared to legacy 9-1-1 systems.

"This is a tremendous accomplishment for everyone involved," said Jason Jackson, Executive Director for the Alabama State 9-1-1 Board. "Technology to support NG9-1-1 has been around for a decade. What was needed was the passionate desire of like-minded people to bring it to fruition. Starting with Alabama NENA, the Alabama legislature's leadership and reaching into every aspect of the state's 9-1-1 infrastructure from state and local governments to dozens of phone companies and technology providers, this entire ecosystem agreed upon a direction and put the energy and resources in place to make this achievement possible."

Appropriate given Alabama's role in being home to the nation's first 9-1-1 call in 1968, the wireless call completed in Etowah County is the first in the nation sent through an aggregated statewide system for distribution to the correct PSAP. In addition to working towards reducing costs and streamlining the network, the most important improvement is the provision of dual-path access to the PSAP vs. the single-path delivery used by legacy systems. This built-in redundancy further improves the ability for citizens to get help in a crisis, such as large-scale disasters that may otherwise negatively impact a single-path 9-1-1 system.

"The technology is the easy part," said Kevin Breault, Vice President of Emergency Products for Bandwidth. "Echoing Jason, it is a singular accomplishment for the state to bring such a wide array of individuals, organizations and companies to the table to drive 9-1-1 technology innovation."

Stratus Technologies

ANGEN is currently in Phase 1 of the deployment process where all wireless 9-1-1 calls will flow through ANGEN for routing to PSAP. T-Mobile is the first wireless carrier deployed with the remaining wireless carriers to follow in coming weeks and months. Working with its network deployment partner, Bandwidth, enabling the remaining carriers and PSAPs involves execution of a certification process that validates carrier connections and call-through testing to ensure the clarity of data transmission to each PSAP location. As these tests complete, additional carriers and PSAPs will be placed in-service. Also in conjunction with Bandwidth and IP network provider, Alabama Supercomputer Authority ASA, ANGEN will begin Phase 2 in early 2014 where 9-1-1 calls will be delivered using SIP for IP-enabled PSAPs, or converted to and delivered using CAMA for legacy PSAPs.

Related story: Albama Next Generation (ANGEN)

About ANGEN
ANGEN is the Alabama Next Generation Emergency Network, a project to install an Internet Protocol (IP) network to allow handling 9-1-1 calls via IP. On 9/30 the Alabama 9-1-1 Board took over responsibility for the ANGEN project from the Alabama Wireless 9-1-1 Board. The project is being funded by the participating 9-1-1 Districts and a matching federal grant with annual operating expenses from the Alabama Wireless 9-1-1 Board's cost recovery fund and the local 9-1-1 Districts' existing budget as ANGEN replaces existing costs in later phases. http://www.angen.org

About Bandwidth
Bandwidth is among the nation's largest and fastest-growing communication technology companies, providing a full range of communications services, including voice origination and termination, a full suite of 9-1-1 services, and more.  www.bandwidth.com

- Corporate News/9-1-1magazine.com (via ANGEN and Bandwidth, 10/7/13)

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