SOURCE: Cisco Systems, Inc.

November 28, 2007 08:00 ET

Cisco IP Interoperability and Collaboration System Connects Multiple Fire Control Centers for Massachusetts Townships

Efficiency of "Push to Talk" Collaboration Between Agencies and Districts Improves FireResponse and Citizen Safety and Security

SAN JOSE, CA--(Marketwire - November 28, 2007) - Cisco® (NASDAQ: CSCO) today announced that Cisco IP Interoperability and Collaboration System (IPICS) has been deployed across four Massachusetts Fire Control Centers, connecting radio systems to allow real-time collaboration between critical fire control centers, day-to-day or in an emergency. The Control Centers have full redundancy to ensure communications survivability in the event of a major incident.

The Massachusetts townships of Ashland, Beverly, Lawrence, and Westford, comprise four of 15 fire districts in the state. In the past, each district had only a common mutual aid channel for communication. However, as the call volume increased, it became apparent that it was critical for these Control Centers to have "intra"operability and redundancy. They also wanted to extend communications interoperability beyond just radio. With Cisco IPICS, the districts have push-to-talk voice interoperability to cellular, IP telephony, and traditional phones, creating a highly secure and reliable foundation for communications on a converged, IP network, regardless of the device being used.

"We felt the Cisco solution was easy to use for multiple operators, job changes, training new people, but also very efficient. Districts are now able to speak each other with just a few mouse clicks -- it's a very elegant solution," says Richard Rochon, fire chief of the town of Westford. "This has engendered a new level of communications among the communities regardless of the types of networks and devices the control centers have. Cisco IPICS has provided us the ability to communicate seamlessly while using our existing radio and network infrastructure. We can also notify key participants during these incidents in a variety of ways through paging, email, and short message service."

"Cisco IPICS' 'Push to Talk' option is helping emergency first responders everywhere to communicate more efficiently than before," said Mark Weidick, vice president and general manager of Cisco's safety and security systems business unit. "With one click of a button, formerly disparate agencies can now reach out to each other for immediate response to citizen safety."

Cisco worked with ARINC Incorporated, who managed the system integration. ARINC used its ARINC Wireless Interoperable Network Solutions (AWINS™) architecture to deploy Cisco IPICS into the four townships' Fire Control Centers fixed infrastructure networks. ARINC is the Federal Communication Commission's only non-government licensee and coordinator of radio communication. For nearly eight decades, ARINC has provided communications, engineering, and integration to deliver mission-critical solutions to the commercial, government, and defense industries. ARINC and Cisco also worked with NetTeks Technology Consultants of Boston, Massachusetts to deliver the solution.

The Cisco IPICS portfolio of products and applications streamlines daily operations and helps enable organizations to rapidly respond to incidents or emergencies. It dissolves communication silos between disparate land mobile radio systems and devices such as mobile phones, landline phones, IP phones and PC clients. Users can communicate with whatever device they have, from wherever they are. Users can be paged or emailed with the status of an event and can be automatically called and invited to join the virtual conference, further improving situation awareness and reducing response time. Cisco IPICS provides flexible and scalable communications interoperability, enhancing the value of existing and new radio, telephony and IP communications networks.

For more information about Cisco IPICS, visit:

About Cisco

Cisco (NASDAQ: CSCO) is the worldwide leader in networking that transforms how people connect, communicate and collaborate. Information about Cisco can be found at For ongoing news, please go to

Cisco, the Cisco logo and Cisco Systems are registered trademarks or trademarks of Cisco Systems, Inc. and/or its affiliates in the United States and certain other countries. All other trademarks mentioned in this document are the property of their respective owners. The use of the word partner does not imply a partnership relationship between Cisco and any other company. This document is Cisco Public Information.

For direct RSS Feeds of all Cisco news, please visit "News@Cisco" at the following link:

Contact Information