implications on the personnel at the scene of emergencies. As a result of obsolescence
and the incompatibility of new technology with the existing system, no substantive
upgrade, short of a complete equipment replacement, initiative was technically possible.
The County Board of Supervisors signed a $21 million contract in December
1999 to replace the existing obsolete and unreliable public safety radio system. A new
state-of -the-art 800 MHz radio system is currently being built and is planned to be fully
operational by April 2003.
The problem is that an implementation plan has not been developed to transition
into the new radio system. The new radio system will have a profound effect on how we
currently do business. A successful transition to the new radio system will require a well
thought out and coordinated implementation plan. A failure to properly implement the
new radio system could waste a $21 million investment and hinder the Department of
Fire and Rescue from accomplishing its basic mission of ensuring the delivery of quality,
efficient, and effective fire protection, emergency management services and timely
responses to the community of Prince William County.
Prince William County is located in Northern Virginia approximately 35 miles
southwest of Washington, D.C. It is bounded on the north by Fairfax and Loudoun
Counties, on the east by the Potomac River (Maryland), on the south by Stafford County
and Quantico Marine Corp Base and on the west by Fauquier County (Appendix B).