Chicago OEMC announces new State-Of-The-Art Dispatch System and Software for City's 9-1-1 Center to improve emergency responses

January 14, 2020

New system will provide law enforcement, fire and EMS responders with more precise call location, real-time status and location of every first responder and rapid insights through embedded analytics and mapping


CHICAGO – The Chicago Office of Emergency Management and Communications (OEMC) today announced that it has entered into a $74.9M agreement with TriTech Software Systems, a CentralSquare company, for a new Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD), Mobile and Analytics software for the City’s 9-1-1 Center. Replacing the City’s more than 20-year-old system, the new state-of-the-art dispatch system is designed to improve emergency response times and keep first responders safer by providing Chicago’s public safety departments with integrated emergency services, more precise locations of emergency calls and real-time information on the scene.

“As one of the nation’s largest and most vibrant cities, it is critical that we provide our first responders with the right tools to ensure the safety of our residents and visitors,” said OEMC Executive Director Rich Guidice. "Following a rigorous and competitive selection process, the City of Chicago chose a proven CAD and Mobile that will allow OEMC to continue migrating to a truly 21st-century data technology system that more effectively responds to the needs of our communities.”

Chicago’s current emergency dispatch system, which was implemented in 1995, will be replaced with a system that will handle the complexity of calls that the emergency dispatch center receives today almost 25 years later. With most calls now coming from cell phones, the new system will provide the 911 Center with the capability to allow callers to send text messages to 9-1-1, provide photos and videos of incidents. The new CAD system will have the capacity to handle all digital input features, including automatically locating a cell phone caller’s location, precisely detecting the location of the nearest first responder and prioritizing incidents based on urgency.

"By ensuring Chicago has the highest quality emergency response system and services, our firefighters and paramedics are better-equipped to keep this city and its residents safe," said Fire Commissioner Richard C. Ford II. "Streamlining emergency responses with Chicago's first responders will not only increase citywide efficiency but ensure a coordinated and collective effort when responding to emergencies citywide."

The new technology will also allow the City of Chicago to streamline its Police and Fire Dispatch Operations by providing a common platform that gives both departments access to the same information in real time. The unified view will help the Chicago Police and the Fire Department share critical information and enhance the coordinated response to handle all dimensions of full-scale emergencies. To prepare for the new system to roll out in 2023, OEMC will begin extensive citywide training of Chicago’s call takers, dispatchers and first responders across all three public safety departments.

"Each and every day, our police officers work side-by-side with Chicago's firefighters, paramedics and first responders to keep our residents safe," said CPD Interim Superintendent Charlie Beck. "With this state-of-the-art emergency dispatch system, we are building a more effective, collaborative and integrated public safety system to better protect Chicago."

Additionally, the new technology will integrate seamlessly into the City’s existing systems at the Chicago Police Department and Chicago Fire Department. From security cameras to gunshot detection sensors, the new CAD system will provide every first responder in Chicago with a 360-degree view of every incident, increasing situational awareness and improving officer safety.

With a new state-of-the-art system, Chicago’s 9-1-1 Center will automatically receive comprehensive updates and the vendor’s work with more than 5,000 public safety agencies will continuously inform the ongoing evolution of the software, ensuring Chicago’s dispatch system will always be up to-date.


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