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STRATEGIES FOR SUCCESSFULLY IMPLEMENTING AN 800MHz RADIO SYSTEM IN THE PRINCE WILLIAM COUNTY ... - page 23 / 54

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risk assessment, he adds, “Somebody needs to be there to force the technical people to

translate what they are saying and doing into firefighter-friendly language. It will slow

them down but improve the project by eliminating problems before they occur,”

Anderson says (Dittmar, 2002, p. 68).

Summary

The Literature Review revealed that effective and reliable public safety radio

systems have always been an essential component of emergency services. Considerable

thought and planning should be given to selecting and implementing the proper radio

system. Emergency services have unique communications needs that require effective

and reliable radio systems to work 100 percent of the time, even under the most difficult

conditions. Technology advances have greatly enhanced and improved radio systems but

many departments have experienced problems with implementing new systems. The

literature review revealed that most of the problems encountered were related to poorly

designed systems, lack of user input, moving too fast, failing to properly train the users,

not developing an effective implementation plan, and by having unrealistic expectations.

The departments that have had successful results in implementing new 800 MHz radio

systems can attribute their success due to the following reasons: properly designed

systems, getting the users involved early, understanding that coverage and

interoperability are critical, proper training of users, developing an effective

implementation plan, having realistic expectations and by having backup plans developed

should the system fail.

Realizing that we do not live in a perfect world and thereby understanding that a

perfect radio system also does not exist. Having realistic expectations, knowing the

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