The delivery of a new communication technology platform for emergency services has taken a step forward today with the signing of a contract to develop a feasibility trial for the national Public Safety Mobile Broadband program.
The Minister for Agriculture, Drought and Emergency Management, David Littleproud said the national program, overseen by the new National Emergency Management Ministers’ Meeting, will deliver a mobile broadband platform to help emergency service organisations communicate more reliably.
“This platform will cut across organisational and geographical boundaries, helping to keep Australians and our police and emergency service workers safe,” Minister Littleproud said.
“One of the lessons from the Black Summer bushfires was the critical importance of communications–staying connected and getting access to information to make decisions can save lives.
“This is a major step forward towards delivering a faster and smarter national capability for our emergency services to fuse critical information, make informed decisions quickly, and act on those decisions with confidence.”
The New South Wales Government, on behalf of all state and territory governments and the Australian Government have committed to work with Nokia, TPG Telecom and Optus, to develop and test technology in a trial that will help shape the design of the national platform for emergency service communications.
The Minister for Customer Service, Victor Dominello, said the recent floods have again reinforced the need for fast, effective, and reliable communications to help coordinate emergency responses.
“Today’s announcement is real progress towards delivering the communications technology our hard-working police and emergency services want and need,” Minister Dominello said.
Australian governments remain committed to a Public Safety Mobile Broadband, which was identified as a national priority by the National Federation Reform Council in 2020.
Expediting a Public Safety Mobile Broadband capability in Australia was also a key recommendation from the Royal Commission into National Natural Disaster Arrangements following the 2019/20 Australian bushfires.