Wednesday, 23 December 2020 12:06

Telstra and Motorola Solutions to deliver “Advanced Public Safety Communication Network” for Tasmania


The deal is a “multi-year contract for mission critical technology and services to transform emergency management in the state”.

Telstra and Motorola Solutions are joining forces to provide Tasmania’s emergency responders and government organisations with “a highly advanced, state-wide mission critical communications network to effectively respond to emergencies”.

The companies report the contract to “design, build, operate and maintain Tasmania’s Government Radio Network (TasGRN) will provide enhanced digital communication and vastly improved radio network coverage for Tasmania’s public safety and essential services personnel throughout the state.

“The innovative network will be built on a feature-rich technology platform to provide a variety of additional capabilities for today and the future.

“These include broadband push-to-talk services enabling seamless communication between radios, smartphones and other devices as well as enhanced integration between existing communication centres’ operating systems and Motorola Solutions’ consoles”.

In delivering the contract, Telstra says it will “draw on its extensive experience in delivering wireless communications services and managing radio systems for public safety agencies”.

Telstra Enterprise Executive Gretchen Cooke said “TasGRN will be the largest single project Telstra has ever carried out in Tasmania and will transform the way government agencies communicate.

“This new radio network will be more reliable, more resilient, more secure and will replace five separate systems so Tasmania’s emergency services can communicate with confidence to help keep Tasmanians safe,” Cooke added.

Con Balaskas, vice president Motorola Solutions Australia and New Zealand said: “The new communications service will enable Tasmania’s emergency services to manage increasingly complex operational requirements – from combating natural disasters, to dealing with the evolving security landscape and beyond.

“In addition to instant and interoperable communications across multiple government organisations, the contract will provide managed services to keep all of TasGRN’s critical technology, infrastructure and features up to date.

“Our involvement in this significant project for Tasmania demonstrates our commitment to ensuring the highest levels of safety for communities as well as the emergency responders that put their lives on the line every day to protect them,” Balaskas said.

The Government Radio Network will be constructed over the next three years with associated services running over 12 years.

The Tasmanian Government also issued a media release on the deal, with Acting Premier Jeremy Rockliff stating the total value of the project is $567 million, with construction to begin in 2021, and user organisations expected to commence migrating over to the new network in the 2022-23 financial year.

“Once complete the project will provide secure and mission critical voice and data communications as part of the Tasmanian Government’s plan to keep Tasmanians safe,” said Acting Premier Rockliff.

“The initial user organisations are Tasmania Police, the Tasmania Fire Service, Ambulance Tasmania, the State Emergency Service, Sustainable Timber Tasmania, Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment, TasNetworks and Hydro Tasmania.

“The project is expected to create around 50 jobs during the three-year construction phase, with more than 30 additional positions created to help run, maintain and oversee the network once it is up and running”, Rockliff concluded.

Tasmanian Minister for Police, Fire and Emergency Management Mark Shelton said the TasGRN will improve public safety outcomes for all Tasmanians and emergency responders.

“Radio communication is a critical technology for organisations across the State, and during emergencies, the radio network must be reliable and continuous,” Shelton said.

“When the State is in need, immediate interoperability will be available for interstate emergency service personnel deployed to Tasmania.  Similarly, any of the 10,000 TasGRN radio users will be able to provide swift support to an interstate jurisdiction in a time of emergency,” Shelton concluded.

Telstra and Motorola Solutions report “a long history of working together and delivering services for mission critical environments.

“In addition to TasGRN, Telstra and Motorola Solutions have delivered many successful public safety projects throughout Australia.

“This includes designing, building, operating and maintaining Queensland’s Government Wireless Network and partnering to deliver a number of communications networks and services for Victorian public safety agencies”.

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Alex Zaharov-Reutt

Alex Zaharov-Reutt is iTWire's Technology Editor is one of Australia’s best-known technology journalists and consumer tech experts, Alex has appeared in his capacity as technology expert on all of Australia’s free-to-air and pay TV networks on all the major news and current affairs programs, on commercial and public radio, and technology, lifestyle and reality TV shows. Visit Alex at Twitter here.

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