High levels of expertise and operational understanding are of course critical factors when it comes to choosing a supplier. This was certainly the case with Thames Valley Police, the UK’s largest non-metropolitan force, when it started looking for a cost effective upgrade to the existing GPRS network connections used by Forward Command Units. According to Roger Bird, Senior Mobile Technology Engineer for Thames Valley Police: “Having had previous experience of satellite communications with another supplier, we were sceptical about what could be achieved. However, after talking to Excelerate Technology, it quickly became apparent that the company understood exactly what we wanted to achieve and could provide advanced solutions that were specifically tailored to the needs of blue light services.”
Thames Valley Police now uses a Transportable Broadband Satellite VPN solution and wireless DECT phones installed in a communications support vehicle that has delivered significant improvements in the way that Silver Command Centres communicate regardless of where they are located.
It provides WAN flexibility with direct, secure links to the force infrastructure as well as standalone LAN connectivity enabling planned or spontaneous Command Centres to be located in buildings or temporary accommodation. Thames Valley Police’s vehicle is regularly deployed at major events across Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire such as Royal Ascot and other Royal events in and around Windsor. Excelerate Technology maintains the system and supplies airtime through its own Virtual Network Operator managed solution.
“Covering such a large geographical area means that we place a lot of emphasis on our communications structure and we don’t want to compromise that in any way. Excelerate Technology provides us with the highest level of support and any technical issues are always rapidly resolved enabling us to maintain a high state of operational readiness at all times,”
Roger Bird, Senior Mobile Technology Engineer, Thames Valley Police.