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Upgrading Devices: The Smooth Transition for Continued Connectivity

The Department of Emergency Communications provides dispatching services for all fire and EMS agencies within Saint Charles County, the Saint Charles County Police Department, Saint Charles County Sheriff’s Department and Saint Charles County Park Rangers. The department serves the Missouri community as one of six dispatching centers and 911 answering points located in the County, which covers 592 square miles and more than 386,000 citizens, as well as visitors.

The Challenge

The Saint Charles County Emergency Communications Department was already using the CalAmp Vanguard™ 3000 to provide basic broadband and GPS to the fire department’s fleet of fire trucks, and to make sure that dispatch could always send the closest vehicle to every incident. In order to interoperate more effectively with other agencies, Saint Charles County needed all the capabilities of the existing Vanguard units, plus a Wi-Fi vehicle area network (VAN). By sharing connectivity, they planned to provide other agencies with access to crucial data to improve public safety and incident management. The main concern in performing the upgrade was to get each vehicle back in service as quickly as possible. The upgrade process had to be smooth, fast and painless.

The Solution

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The Vanguard 5530 provides the VAN capabilities that Saint Charles needs, and is backward-compatible with the Vanguard 3000 units that were already installed. The hardware, software and physical dimensions of the device are all a perfect match. “We appreciated that the new units kept the same size mount,” said System Technician Jonathan Kriegh. “It was easy to upgrade. We just unscrewed the Vanguard 3000 and put in the Vanguard 5530.” Like the older units, the Vanguard 5530 provides the durability and remote management that Saint Charles County Emergency Services had come to rely on. The firmware, configuration and even passwords can be updated over the air. “If there’s anything I need to know, the routers send an SMS text message to my phone.” With the new Vanguard 5530 units from CalAmp partner DH Wireless Solutions, Saint Charles can share information instantly with responding units from other agencies over the VAN, making cooperation and incident management easier and more effective.


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