Highways agency extends use of Airwave

Highways agency extends use of Airwave

3rd March 2009

The Highways Agency is equipping more of its Incident Support Units with Airwave to help them work more safely and effectively.

As the UK’s dedicated public safety communications network, Airwave provides unrivalled coverage along the country’s motorways and beyond. Since 2005, more than 500 Highways Agency traffic officers patrolling in 200 vehicles have used Airwave, but this number is being significantly increased when 900 Incident Support Unit personnel begin using the service later this year.

The Incident Support Units (ISUs) need to use Airwave in order to collaborate with their Traffic Officer colleagues, who are responsible for minimising disruption following incidents such as accidents or breakdowns. The role of ISUs includes the removal of debris, infrastructure repairs and the provision of additional traffic management equipment.

Like all public safety organisations, the Highways Agency needs instantaneous communications to enable personnel to respond to incidents quickly and appropriately. The ability to interoperate with the police, who use Airwave nationally, is another benefit along with high levels of security, coverage and service availability.

Peter Richards, from the Highways Agency’s Traffic Technology Team, said: “To minimise congestion we need to respond to incidents, and clear them, as quickly and safely as we can. Airwave radios help us work together in a much slicker and smarter manner to clear incidents as effectively as possible.”

Jeff Parris, Director of Business Development, said: “We are delighted that the Highways Agency is extending its use of Airwave and look forward to working with them to help keep our motorways safe and working efficiently.”

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