Tennessee Emergency Communications Board Selects NetTN Network for its Next Generation 911 Initiative
As new communication methods take further hold with the youth of our nation, national 911 organizations have identified the need to move from the current 911 technology to one that is more flexible, while maintaining seamless 911 call delivery. In order to take advantage of technical innovations and ultimately allow alternate means of communicating with 911 centers such as emailing or text messaging, it is necessary to move 911 from its current analog infrastructure to an IP-based solution. With that in mind, the members of the Tennessee Emergency Communications Board (TECB) concluded that to maintain the State’s status as a national leader in 911, the current technology must be replaced with a more modern infrastructure.
In order to facilitate this move from the current technology, the TECB worked closely with the State of Tennessee NetTN Program Office and its contractors to determine whether the State’s wide area network called Network Tennessee (NetTN) would be sufficiently secure, redundant and robust for 911. The TECB was very careful to ensure any new network replacement for the current 911 infrastructure have more redundancy than the current network and determined, after a lengthy review, that the NetTN network affords this redundancy.
Over the course of the past two years, the TECB has worked extensively with NetTN to understand next generation 911 requirements so the underlying providers of NetTN could design and develop a next-generation 911 solution based on evolving industry standards. This IP-based emergency call delivery solution will be one of the first statewide Emergency Services IP Networks (ESINet) in the country. By leveraging IP as the underlying transport, ESINet provides 911 services with additional redundancy and features that do not exist in today’s analog based 911 platform. It also positions Tennessee’s 911 network for future technological expansion and evolution to include the ability to send text messages, video, pictures, etc to a 911 center once the standards are developed by the national 911 organizations.