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BDFL - Memuneh
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Topic # 97088 10-Feb-2012 12:02
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Just received:

Discussion paper reviewing 111 system released

Communications and Information Technology Minister Amy Adams today released a discussion paper reviewing the 111 emergency calling system.

The review considers the performance of the 111 system through to the point where calls are handed over by Telecom to emergency service providers. It does not cover the response of emergency service providers to 111 calls.

About three million 111 calls are made each year, 25 per cent of which are genuine calls needing to be transferred to emergency service communication centres.

“Having a reliable and efficient 111 service is critically important for public safety and community well-being,” says Ms Adams.

“This review will ensure the framework for the service is robust and is able to accommodate changing technologies, practices and structures.”

The paper looks at whether current governance arrangements and call-answering processes are satisfactory. It concludes that the 111 service works well and has a high level of resilience.

However, the review raises questions about whether current governance arrangements are well-suited for considering improvements to the service, and the impact of new technologies.

Two options are suggested to manage the future direction of the 111 service:

• Setting up a small, dedicated group in a government agency; or
• Strengthening the joint industry-government advisory board which currently oversees the 111 service

The paper was prepared in consultation with both the Telecommunications Carriers’ Forum and emergency service providers.

The discussion document is available from the Ministry of Economic Development's website.

Submissions are due by 5pm on Friday 30 March, 2012.

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Baby Get Shaky!
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  Reply # 589821 3-Mar-2012 12:44
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This topic is of great interest to me and I support changes in policy that support the work emergency services do in locating and verifying customers. I think that Telecom do a great job handling the current 111 system, with a high service level generally achieved. However there is always room for improvements  so it will be interesting to see what suggestions come from this review.

After reading through sbiddle's blog post and his mention of E911, I'm interested in what peoples opinions are of a similar system being implemented in NZ? Both from a privacy and a cost perspective?

Personally I would support a similar compulsory system being introduced into NZ with suitable privacy restrictions being put into place, similar to current policies for accessing TESA. It would provide another vital tool for locating Non Speech Emergency calls and provide further efficiencies for emergency communicators.

The financial cost of implementing a similar system could be controlled through a gradual roll out with a realistic time frame. Upgrades to Emergency Services systems in the near future will allow for easier integration of an E911 style system into the current platform, so conceivably the only bottle neck in having widespread adoption would be the average lifespan of a mobile phone, 2-4 years?

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  Reply # 593190 10-Mar-2012 13:10
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It sounds like a worthwhile thing to review the 111 governance arrangement with a view to taking on service improvements and new technologies. The system should also be decoupled from any particular telco to ensure that emerging telcos connect to the 111 system in a way that gives all users the best possible service. I would think that in an emergency scenario, broken links between any telco and the 111 service should fail over to priority bandwidth on any other route available -- including wireless. If links to the emergency call centre itself goes down (as it did in the 9/11 attack), the system should be setup for alternative 111 call centres. This means 111 may need VoIP for its core systems as well as supporting location technologies etc with VoIP callers.

Or am I off the mark?

Qualified in business, certified in fibre, stuck in copper, have to keep going  ^_^

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