PSAP Disaster and Emergency Preparedness: Resiliency Analysis of Pierce County 9-1-1 Communications [open pdf - 518KB]
"The problem within Pierce County, WA was there had been no recent review or analysis of public safety communications resiliency. This lack of analysis left Pierce County emergency communications inadequately prepared, should one or more of the public safety answering points fail to function. If the 9-1-1 system failed to function appropriately, the public would be in jeopardy of losing access to emergency services, placing their health and safety at risk. The author performed descriptive research to analyze the current level of resiliency in Pierce County emergency communications to determine what steps should be considered in order to provide an appropriate level of resiliency. The author carried out the research by performing a literature review, conducting a survey, performing data analysis, attending several meetings of the PSAP [Public Safety Answering Point] Managers' Backup Development Committee and conducting personal interviews. The author used the research to address four questions: (a) What are the current risks facing Pierce County PSAPs? (b) What is the current condition of Pierce County PSAPs in relation to current industry standards and best practices? (c) Are adequate backup plans in place to provide an appropriate level of resiliency? (d) What limitations are there to the PSAPs sustaining backup operations? The results indicated that Pierce County was not currently meeting industry standards and best practices for critical infrastructure resiliency. Recommendations were provided to the Pierce County public safety answering points to improve resiliency through a coordinated effort of planning, implementation, training, evaluation and funding. Through this effort, a foundation can be established to provide a greater level of resiliency in Pierce County emergency communications."
United States. Dept. of Homeland Security: http://www.dhs.gov/