Siemens and Radio Solutions, Inc. (RSI) recently announced a strategic alliance to offer reliable and critical communications for first responders. The alliance teams Emergency Responder Communications Enhancement Systems (ERCES) from RSI, a Norwell, MA-based manufacturer of UL 2524-listed Bi-Directional Amplifiers (BDA) with Siemens’ life safety industry expertise and national footprint. This combined effort will bolster Siemens’ continued efforts to deliver increased safety by minimizing responder time and ensuring building occupants are protected at the highest level.
These systems are purchased by facility management or building owners from a trained and certified system provider who will design, install, and test the system.
“Reliable radio coverage is essential for first responders during emergencies because lives depend on it. However, most commercial buildings, including hospitals and schools, lack sufficient coverage,” said Admir Surkovic, Founder and CEO/CTO of Radio Solutions, Inc. ”Our strategic alliance with Siemens expands our ability to ensure high quality deployments of our solutions, from high-rise towers to single story schools, from hospitals and municipal buildings to transportation hubs and tunnels.”
Modern energy efficient construction materials, particularly those used in LEED-certified buildings, such as Low-E glass and metal-clad insulation dramatically reduce the ability for radio frequency transmissions to reach first responders inside buildings. Environmental factors such as proximity to the public safety radio repeater site or nearby buildings and other structures also affect how radio communications penetrate buildings.
“In the past, we were primarily asked to specify only fire detection and notification systems. Today, electrical and general contractors, as well as building owners are requesting more and more that we incorporate Emergency Responder Communications Enhancement Systems into our fire and life safety portfolio,” said Dave Hopping, President and CEO of Siemens Smart Infrastructure USA. “And that’s where RSI and Siemens come together, to provide a complete in-building solution by increasing protection for occupants and first responders in buildings.”
The RSI solution boosts the signal level of the desired frequencies for emergency communication (uplink and downlink) and distributes that boosted signal throughout the building, using antennas, cabling and other components that transmit to and receive communications from first responder radios. This allows first responders to communicate over their radios during an emergency without coverage gaps.
UL 2524-listed for In-building 2-Way Emergency Radio Communication Enhancement System, RSI’s ERCES is also independent third-party verified and conforms with IFC (International Fire Code), NFPA 72 (National Fire Alarm Signaling Code), and NFPA 1221 (Standard for the Installation, Maintenance, and Use of Emergency Services Communications Systems).