Sepura’s Radio Manager revolutionises TETRA hand-held radio programming
August 2009 –Devon and Cornwall Constabulary in the UK has recently rolled out Sepura’s Radio Manager Server version with remote clients located in the majority of its police stations. The adoption of Sepura’s radio management tool, which makes the programming process more efficient, has brought tangible financial benefits to the English constabulary. It means that Police officers are never further than 20 minutes travel time away from a remote programming location.
Devon and Cornwall Constabulary is England’s largest police force in terms of geographical area served, and covers a total population of 1.5 million, which rises substantially with an influx of around 11 million tourists each year. The constabulary comprises 3,500 police officers, of whom some
2,900 use Sepura Airwave terminals, alongside 600 special constables, 500 police staff and nearly 400 Police Community Support Officers.
The Constabulary completed the migration to TETRA in 2005. The force acquired more than 4,500 hand-held radios and over 500 vehicle and fixed mobile terminals. Sepura supplied the entire hand-held fleet of radios, with each terminal containing Sepura’s fully-integrated and highly-sensitive sGPS™ module.
Tim Bishop, Airwave Development Manager for Devon and Cornwall Constabulary commented: “The introduction of Sepura’s remote programming pods means that officers can receive updates and upgrades at their own station or at a nearby station. We planned the distribution of the pods so that nobody needs to travel more than 20 kilometres to receive upgrades and/or updates for their TETRA radios”.
The decision to deploy Radio Manager throughout the force followed a pilot of the technology over the Christmas and New Year period. This project delivered the upgrade of over 1,000 hand-held radios with the use of just 4 programming pods.
Mr Bishop added: “Another major advantage is that the radio’s PIN (Personal Identification Number) can be reset remotely. In the past, every time a PIN was entered three times incorrectly, a handset would become locked. Precious police officer time was then wasted in travelling to the nearest engineer and waiting for the radio to be unlocked again. Now, with the remote PIN resetting, a typical event of this type may only last 5 minutes”.
Mr Bishop concluded: “In the past, a force-wide update would have taken months to implement, but now there’s the potential for an update of this magnitude to be carried out within a single cycle of duty shifts”.
Richard Redgrave, UK and Ireland Sales Director for Sepura commented: “Mr Bishop’s points about time and cost savings are impressive. The initial investment in hardware, software and communications links will be paid back by the first software upgrade, thereafter saving substantial sums of money every year!”
Mr Redgrave went on to add: “Radio Manager is a fantastic radio management system that overcomes the logistical challenge of rapidly updating large quantities of radios. We look forward to a wider adoption of this product by many more organisations from a variety of sectors world-wide as Sepura delivers to its customers the lowest cost of ownership over the full life cycle of the radio fleet.”