Pa. county taps Motorola for data communications, laptops

An acquisition of mobile laptop computers from Motorola Inc. by Chester County, Pa., is expected to improve data communication for police and fire departments within the county's borders.

The $5 million project for the county's Department of Emergency Services includes 685 Motorola laptops to upgrade the way emergency responders receive and share information in the field.

One hundred Motorola ML 900 rugged laptop computers purchased for emergency medical services vehicles were deployed last year. Police vehicles are now being fitted with the computers and installation in fire vehicles will follow. In all, 57 fire companies and 44 police forces will be linked to the countywide data system.

The system allows data to move more quickly than the previous mobile data system supported, and provides first responders with more incident information from dispatchers while they are en route to calls. This means an EMS crew can start a patient care report in the ambulance and provide it to the hospital upon arrival. And some hospitals are equipped to allow the crew to transmit the report electronically to the emergency room.

The police departments will be able to generate their arrest reports on the data system in their vehicles giving them more time on the street. They are also gaining quicker access to databases for processing license plate checks and checking on outstanding warrants with Motorola's messaging software, which links mobile computing devices to dispatch operations.

Motorola has about 68,000 employees and had almost $36.8 billion in annual revenue in fiscal 2005. The company ranks No. 20 on Washington Technology's 2005 Top 100 list of federal prime contractors.

About the Author

Doug Beizer is a staff writer for Washington Technology.

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