Arqiva-led consortium shortlisted for Irish public safety network

Arqiva-led consortium shortlisted for Irish public safety network

  • Capital investment in excess of 100M over a 10 year period
  • Bid to provide a fully interoperable national digital radio network for the Garda, fire and ambulance services
  • Arqiva joins forces with Lockheed Martin and SELEX Communications to leverage existing presence and experience in Irish market

Dublin, 26 April 2006 – Arqiva today announced that it has been shortlisted by the Irish Government to provide a nationwide digital radio service to Ireland’s emergency services. In partnership with Lockheed Martin and SELEX Communications, a Finmeccanica company, Arqiva is one of the prime bidders for the National Digital Radio Services (NDRS) project, which involves a capital investment in excess of 100m over 10 years. The NDRS project will enable the emergency services to communicate securely and effectively with each other over one network for the first time, bringing them in line with their European counterparts.

The proposed service will dramatically improve communications between all of Ireland’s emergency services and other public bodies, including the Prison Service and Customs & Excise, who currently rely on mobile phone networks for inter-service communications. The NDRS project will enable secure communications in the event of a major disaster, enabling rapid and secure information sharing.

Pat Walls, General Manager for Arqiva in Ireland, commented, “We’re delighted to have been short-listed for such a high profile contract. The NDRS project promises to deliver state-of-the-art digital radio communications to the emergency services throughout Ireland, enabling them to respond more effectively and with greater coordination. Arqiva has a long history in providing managed services to the blue light services in Ireland and, with the skills and experience that Lockheed Martin and SELEX Communications bring to the consortium, we are confident that we can provide a resilient, secure and flexible communications network within the timeframe set out by the Government.”

Arqiva currently provides radio communications services to all of the ambulance services in Ireland and 70% of the fire brigades, as well as providing services to the RNLI, the Irish Coastguard and the Garda. The company will lead the consortium’s bid and, if successful, will finance, design, build, operate and manage the overall national digital radio network. SELEX Communications will provide radio infrastructure and, along with other manufacturers, will offer a framework contract for provision of radio terminals. Lockheed Martin completes the consortium and will provide programme management and system engineering, alongside independent quality assurance and design validation, a key requirement from bidders.

Arqiva plans to build the network by upgrading existing infrastructure, therefore minimising the environmental impact of building new sites.

Richard Bennett, Marketing Communications, Public Safety, Arqiva
01962 822597

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