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FirstNet Emergency Drop Kits to Create 'Connected Bubble' for Public Safety

August 10, 2018  | 

In an emergency, communication is critical to response efforts. That's why former public safety officials and first responders on the AT&T FirstNet team, in collaboration with Sonim, are creating Emergency Drop Kits. These portable kits will envelop first responders in a 300-foot "connected bubble," letting them maintain constant communication to better coordinate their response.

The Emergency Drop Kits are being designed for use during emergencies in rural and remote areas, as well as areas where communications may be temporarily unavailable. Think wildfires or hurricanes.

Incident commanders will be able to drop in the kits for rapid connectivity to FirstNet. First responders will also be able to take the kits with them in the field. Ideal for short-term situations or as an interim solution until a FirstNet dedicated deployable arrives, a typical Emergency Drop Kit will include:

  • A Cradlepoint LTE router equipped with a FirstNet Ready™ MC400 modem and integrated Wi-Fi. This will provide a highly secure and reliable data communications hub with intelligent failover to Inmarsat Government satellite service.
  • Four FirstNet Ready Sonim XP8 devices. These will come preloaded with FirstNet Certified and Reviewed apps – like Intrepid Response – to help improve public safety's situational awareness. The Intrepid Response app can show each first responder's live GPS location in the field, so command can "see" where they are and what's happening around them.

"This is a great example of how FirstNet is driving focused innovation for first responders," said Chris Sambar, senior vice president, AT&T-FirstNet. "To create the Emergency Drop Kits, we're pulling in expertise from public safety and across the industry. The kits will make it even easier for first responders to stay connected to the full capabilities of their network – no matter where their mission takes them."

FirstNet will bring first responders added coverage and capacity through the Band 14 buildout. This will help provide greater access to the connectivity they need, where they need it. This includes rural and remote areas. The build is also bringing more network resiliency to first responders, as critical sites are being hardened to meet their needs. The drop kits will serve as an additional tool to help ensure first responders are not without the critical communications they rely on. The kits are currently moving from a proof of concept to a reality for future availability to purchase.

To learn more about how FirstNet is helping public safety, visit FirstNet.com.

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