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Hamburg is the second largest city in Germany, after Berlin, and home to approximately 1.8 million inhabitants, with its metropolitan region home to over five million. More than one million incoming calls must be handled by the control centers of fire services and police. The control room renewal project (in German Projekt ERneuerung LEitstellen - PERLE) will provide the two emergency services with a modern technical control room solution, in order to meet the organizations current and future requirements, as well as increase safety for citizens of and visitors to Hamburg. Increasing operator efficiency “We were impressed with the innovative solution concept that Frequentis had demonstrated to us, especially the multimedia functionality that will prepare us for the future needs of the emergency services, increasing the efficiency and operator convenience as well as public emergency contact,” said Eiko Hinrichs group leader of PERLE - firefighter and engineer for communication technology. “It gave us a great pleasure, to gain Frequentis as a very experienced and reliable partner for the implementation of our new communication system.“ 3020 LifeX™ is a future-oriented public safety communication and collaboration software designed to fulfill the demands of a next-generation control room (on-premises or hosted) that requires multimedia contact handling for telephony as well as radio for future cross-coupling of these technologies. Its sophisticated, modular architecture integrates a variety of systems with various protocols and can flexibly exchange or upgrade them without compromising ongoing operations. Efficient call handling and resource allocation The technology for Hamburg Fire and Police will be located in two central data centers and in two control centers, accommodating more than 220 workstations. The Frequentis communication system will integrate with the customer’s computer aided dispatch solution and the geographical information system, enabling geolocation and thus assisting operators with efficient call handling and resource allocation. “Receiving this contract during the COVID-19 lockdown period in Germany shows customers trust in Frequentis. We also commend customers who have future-orientated outlooks, considering not only the current needs of their service but also future changes and required functionality,” says Robert Nitsch, Frequentis Vice President Public Safety. “3020 LifeX™ focusses on increasing operator performance and harmonizing communication and collaboration without being bound to a physical location. We are pleased to be supporting the City of Hamburg’s police and fire services with this task and their future development strategy.”
The U.S. Army in Germany recently added eight Scania structural pumper P410 B4x4HZ trucks with Rosenbauer-body and Allison 4000 Series™ fully automatic transmissions to its fire fleet. The vehicles, featuring the new CP 31 Crew Cab, are powered by a 302 kW (410 hp) diesel engine combined with an Allison 4000 Series™ fully automatic transmission. They will be stationed at different locations across Germany. The U.S. Army has procured this vehicle configuration for the last 10 years, partly because of the advantages of a standardized fleet for staff training and vehicle maintenance, but also due to its positive experience with Allison transmissions over the past three decades. Operate water pump via the Power Take-Off “So far, the transmissions have fulfilled all requirements of the U.S. Army with regards to performance, operation and maintenance,” said Sigurd Mack, Fire Protection Specialist at the U.S. Army Installation Management Command’s European Headquarters in Sembach near Kaiserslautern. “This also applies to the integrated hydraulic retarder and the Power Take-Off with the pump and roll function. It enables us to maneuver the vehicle safely and, at the same time, operate the water pump via the Power Take-Off - which is indispensable for efficient firefighting. For our operations and emergency responses good acceleration, easy handling and robustness are essential.” According to the American NFPA (National Fire Protection Association) 1901 (Standard for Fire Apparatus) directive for firefighting vehicles, fully automatic transmissions are mandatory for heavy firefighting vehicles. In its solicitation, the U.S. Army does not only specify fully automatic transmissions, it also identifies bespoke emergency vehicle transmission software. “A fully automatic transmission will only properly benefit the driver during operation if the shift pattern is tuned to the vehicle and the transmission works together effectively with the driver. It has to meet the specific mission for emergency response,” said Mack. Improved acceleration and higher average speed Allison fully automatic transmissions differ from other technologies. Among other factors, they have specially developed shift calibration programs for the fire and rescue application. When combined with continuous powershifting, this results in improved acceleration, higher average speed and faster response times. The transmissions shift smoothly at precisely the right moment, allowing the driver to concentrate fully" The fully automatic Allison transmission with its patented torque converter and Continuous Power Technology™ multiplies engine torque during vehicle start-up and acceleration. Gear changes are made without interruption, resulting in the smooth transfer of power to the drive wheels and maximum efficiency between engine and transmission. “The transmissions shift smoothly at precisely the right moment, allowing the driver to concentrate fully on the road, which contributes significantly to accident prevention,” said Mack. “In addition, to have competent and highly skilled service technicians, as well as spare parts service locally available greatly limits down time and contributes to our readiness,” said Mack. “The transmission manufacturer infrastructure has also supported our goals so far in this regard.” Reliability and durability in extremely difficult conditions The oldest Allison transmissions in the fire brigade of the U.S. Army in Germany have clocked up over 30 years of service Allison fully automatic transmissions have demonstrated their outstanding reliability and durability under extremely difficult conditions and are consequently used by numerous fire brigade fleets worldwide. There are currently about 70 Allison fully automated vehicles in the fire truck fleet of the U.S. Army in Germany. The oldest Allison transmissions in the fire brigade of the U.S. Army in Germany have clocked up over 30 years of service. In 2007, the drivetrain components from 12 older Amertek 2500L trucks were removed and installed into 12 overhauled firefighting trucks, so called “glider kits.” The Detroit diesel engines and Allison HT 750 DRD transmissions of the Amertek 2500L trucks, which at that time were already around 25 years old, were fitted to a new HME 1871 SFO chassis with a body made by Hensel. Glider kits used for multi-purpose vehicles for firefighting “In the USA, general vehicle overhaul is a recognized procedure for vehicle maintenance and service life extension. The engines and transmissions, especially in fire trucks, are still in relatively good working condition and have proven to be very reliable, even after a long period of time. This contributed to the decision for a service life extension,” said Mack. Compared to a new purchase, the “glider kits” helped to save approx. 80,000 - 100,000 USD per vehicle without compromising the functionality. The “glider kits” are used as multi-purpose vehicles for firefighting and for providing technical assistance.
XPander is Apollo’s hybrid wireless range. It offers a comprehensive solution to many problems that present themselves when installing a fire detection system. It is quick to install and requires minimal cabling. In comparison to a wired system is often 75% quicker to install. XPander has many applications, its versatility key to deciding on which type of system fits best for a building. Ideal applications: Time-sensitive Projects Minimizing Disruption to Building Operations Temporary Structures (i.e. marquees) Annexes To Minimize Disturbance of Asbestos Materials To Preserve Building Fabric (e.g. in Heritage / List Buildings) A great example of a time-sensitive project where XPander excels is in schools. A school is generally occupied most of the time and therefore being able to install an entire fire system without jeopardizing safety is a tricky line to walk. So, a quick and compliant solution is needed. XPander can be used during a remodeling project, for an off-campus outbuilding, or even to protect a temporary structure like a graduation marquee. The physical interface is wired onto the loop as standard, but the detectors can be placed inside of these areas wirelessly during the event and then can be removed when the marquees are taken down. This is much faster than hard wiring each time. One can take comfort in the knowledge that students are kept safe in every scenario. Wireless solution Another challenge is making upgrades to a school system during summer holidays. One might only have a small window of opportunity to make the upgrades before the students return. Having to wire in a complete system just so that building work can be completed, only to remove all of that wiring hard work, is both costly and time-consuming. XPander allowed for an easier install where the project area was an Emergency Care Department" A wireless solution is ideal, it removes the need to delay construction, and shaves off time at the end of the project as there are no wires to remove. Just simply detach the detectors. Similar issues occur in the healthcare sector. A hospital, for instance, is almost never vacant and therefore extensive wiring work would cause uncomfortable disruption. XPander would eliminate these concerns and installing a compliant fire system would cause minimal disturbance. Ease of installation “XPander allowed for an easier install where the project area was an Emergency Care Department (inc A&E) where minimal intrusion on a live site was key. Wireless was the logical solution to bring these areas up to L1 standards with a new system.” - Apollo Customer Testimonial Temporary structures offer a unique challenge when trying to keep people safe from fire. COVID-19 Pods and temporary accommodation for medical staff / resources need to be protected without unwanted complications. XPander can be quickly added to the existing hospital fire system. An interface is placed on the loop, this device ‘manages’ all of the wireless devices fitted in the temporary structure. The devices even show up on the panel, as if it was wired into the loop. This secures the integrity of the existing system and makes sure that any necessary expansion is protected from fire. Cost-effective solution COVID-19 has caused unexpected slowdowns within the construction and fire industry communities. But as the restrictions lift there will be an influx of work. And having a quick and easy solution at the ready could mitigate any further frustrations. Additional businesses and venues will be opening from 4th July. That includes hotels, which opens up a lot of ‘away from home’ opportunities. Being prepared for this wave of new work with multiple solutions at the ready is essential. A wireless solution should be quick to hand, its fast installation invaluable when managing a high workload. Quick, easy and cost-effective.
Getac, a globally renowned rugged mobile computing manufacturer, has come to the aid of the Central Beacons Mountain Rescue Team (CBMRT) with the donation of powerful rugged mobile devices, along with accompanying accessories from its partners. The new solutions replace the CBMRT’s original IT equipment, which was lost during a devastating fire at its base of operations in Merthyr Tydfil, and provide a significant technology upgrade in the process. Rugged mobile devices The Central Beacons Mountain Rescue Team (CBMRT) is a voluntary organization covering the Central Brecon Beacons, including South Wales’ highest mountain, Pen y Fan, Cribyn and Corn Du, as well as the Ystradfellte waterfalls. Getac donated the ZX70 fully rugged Android tablets and F110 fully rugged Windows tablets The CBMRT responds to over 120 incidents a year, with rescues often taking place in extremely challenging conditions. Many areas of the national park are also very remote, which can make effective coordination between rescue teams difficult without the right equipment. Getac donated the ZX70 fully rugged Android tablets and F110 fully rugged Windows tablets, both of which feature a host of innovative technologies that greatly enhance the CBMRT's capabilities during time-sensitive operations. Integrated with Lumibond touchscreen technology Getac’s revolutionary Lumibond touchscreen technology means rescuers can view and operate the devices in all weather conditions, from bright sunlight to heavy rain, and even while wearing gloves. The powerful inbuilt 4G LTE connectivity also enables team members to remotely log-in to the SARCALL incident management platform from any location, where they can liaise with other rescue parties, coordinate searches and provide real-time updates. Vehicle docking stations Secure vehicle docking stations with compact and robust Zirkona mounting brackets were also donated by Gamber-Johnson, while Lind Electronics provided high-quality, rugged vehicle power adaptors that together meet the requirements of the most demanding and harsh environments. These have been used to create fully integrated solutions in both the front and rear of the CBMRT’s three new response vehicles, allowing the devices to be safely used when in transit, then detached and taken into the field once teams are at the scene of an incident. Getac tablets Mountain rescue can be hard on equipment, but Getac tablets and accompanying accessories perform flawlessly" “When we’re trying to locate a person in need of our help, the last thing we want to worry about is our devices,” said Penny Brockman, Team Leader, Central Beacons Mountain Rescue Team. Penny adds, “Mountain rescue can be very hard on equipment, but our Getac tablets and accompanying accessories perform flawlessly in even the toughest conditions, meaning we can stay focused on the task at hand, which is saving lives.” Technology in frontline emergency response “Technology is playing an increasingly important role in frontline emergency response and when the CBMRT lost all of its equipment in the fire, both we and our partners were more than happy to step in,” said Chris Bye, President, Getac UK Ltd. Chris adds, “With the new rugged solutions in place, rescue teams have everything they need to communicate and coordinate effectively in the field, giving the best possible chance of success.”
Nittan Europe, UK manufacturer of conventional and addressable fire detection products and systems, has had its Nittan Evolution analog addressable fire detection system installed into St Nicholas Church in Bristol. The system was supplied and commissioned by Coomber Fire and Security Systems who are a Nittan Elite Partner and BAFE SP203-1 & SP101 accredited. Grade II listed, St Nicholas Church was built in 1769, although the crypt dates back to medieval times. St. Nicholas has always played an important role in Bristol, whether it be for worship, providing shelter during WWII or, more recently, home to Bristol City Council tourist office and archive. The church was reopened in 2018 as a center for worship, mission and social engagement continuing this legacy of being a church “in the city, for the city”. Analog addressable fire detection system To protect this much-loved building, a Nittan Evolution analog addressable fire detection system has been installed throughout, featuring 51 devices including point detectors and beam detectors, call points and high output sounder beacons. Coomber Fire and Security Systems is an independent fire and security installer in Somerset. It chose Nittan for this project based on the reliability and quality of its Evolution range combined with the increased loop voltage which allows for longer cable runs; “ideal in an old church of this size,” states Adam Pitman, Senior Fire Systems Engineer, Coomber Fire and Security Systems. Evolution is Nittan’s advanced, premium fire system. Evolution uses ASIC technology in the sensors and sophisticated detection algorithms, combining extremely reliable fire detection together with a very high degree of protection against unwanted false alarms. Its advanced, highly flexible protocol allows for substantial amounts of information to be transmitted at high speed and is not affected by the number of devices on the loop.