El Paso County safeguards public with scalable dispatch capabilities

Texas county uses computer-aided dispatch (CAD) solution to support interoperability between 39 agencies

El Paso Dispatch

The challenge

El Paso, Texas, is situated in the farthest western corner of the state near the U.S-Mexico border. It is the 20th largest city in the United States, but despite its size, is isolated from other large cities in Texas. The El Paso County 911 District is responsible for 850,000 residents and handles more than 1.1 million calls every year. The 911 District supports one primary PSAP, one backup PSAP and 11 secondary PSAPs. Together, these PSAPs serve 39 public safety agencies.

Because of El Paso’s isolation, the ability for these PSAPs and agencies to support one another is exceedingly important, for day-to-day operations, as well as major events and incidents. The 911 District needed a shared CAD system to support interoperability among emergency response agencies across the region.

The solution

Long before the concept of an Emergency Services IP Network (ESInet) was a reality, the 911 District implemented Hexagon’s CAD solution. Before, five larger agencies shared a common system, leaving all the smaller agencies to support themselves with existing resources and track calls with spreadsheets.

Now, the system is shared countywide. The 911 District provides the infrastructure and technology, while the partner agencies handle dispatching. Currently, 39 different agencies – 24 law enforcement, 10 fire, four EMS and El Paso County 911 – benefit from the shared system. These technologies are provided, managed and funded fully by the 911 District.

The city of El Paso was the site of a tragic domestic terrorism incident in 2019. More than 20 people were killed and more than 20 others injured. El Paso County 911 District Director Scott Calderwood said the tragedy taxed the community and response systems to their limits, so the CAD system’s scalability during that time was crucial.

“Our team feels the collaboration is second to none. During these events, El Paso was able to coordinate multiple agencies all responding to the same incident and all with the same situational awareness.”
Scott Calderwood
El Paso County 911 District

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