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‘Speed and safety’ at core of new Garda despatch system


From this week's Galway City Tribune

From this week's Galway City Tribune

‘Speed and safety’ at core of new Garda despatch system ‘Speed and safety’ at core of new Garda despatch system

A new high-tech communication system that will log calls and despatch Gardaí from a regional control centre will speed up response times for the public and improve safety for officers, according to those rolling it out.

One of the first national police despatch systems in Europe was unveiled in the North-Western Region headquarters in Murrough in Renmore this week with a detailed explanation of how the GardaSafe has been working since it went live in Galway last March.

So far, three out of four districts are now using the system, which has cost €10.7 million to roll out up to now. The Dublin district is switch over by the end of the year.

The new system automatically logs the location of Eircodes onto a map, indicates where there are Gardaí on patrol that can respond, red flags if there are outstanding warrants attached to a person or if the address has been the location of previous violent incidents.

While members of the public should still ring their local Garda station for non-emergencies, incidents that require an urgent response will be forwarded to the control centre where a detailed overview of the mobile units in the vicinity can be seen and any previous history associated with the location or caller is immediately evident.

The despatch officer can then allocate the nearest patrol car, unmarked Garda car or the armed support unit, depending on the nature of the incident, which is prioritised from one to five.

In a major new development, each officer will be given access to all the relevant information on their mobile phones, via a new GardaSafe app once they are despatched to respond to an incident.

There will be a digital audio recording of each call and the response to it will be linked in with the Pulse – the central database for crime incidents – and GISC (Garda Information Services Centre) systems, removing the need to duplicate the amount of information that Gardaí have to log manually.

Pictured: Members of the media being shown the control centre at the press briefing at Garda Western Region Headquarters, Renmore. The briefing provided details of the new GardaSAFE information technolgy-based crime reporting system. PHOTO: BRIAN HARDING.

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