POLICE Magazine

DEC 2018

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22 POLICE DECEMBER 2018 Technology demonstrated during the scenario included a va- riety of wireless communication tools, numerous aerial assets such as drones and balloons, a floating sonar drone, and an in- novative amphibious rescue vehicle. e Hydronalix EMILY (Emergency Integrated Lifesaving LanYard) is an aquatic drone capable of a variety of functions. It can speed out into swift water or an ocean riptide at 30 mph to rescue drowning people and, fitted with side scan sonar, it can locate sunken vehicles, bodies, or evidence. At OCR, the drone was used to locate people (dummies) trapped in submerged vehicles. Divers used the data provided by EMILY's sonar to go down and bring up the victims. e sonar interface for the EMILY is a simple Hummingbird system very similar to a fish finder. Hydronalix (www.emilyrobot.com) says it integrates the simple sonar system with EMILY so that users do not need so- phisticated skills to interpret information from the drone. ere were numerous unmanned drones in the air and the water during the hur- ricane scenario but the tool that stole the show was a manned rescue vehicle called the SHERP. e SHERP is an amphibious ATV that was designed and developed in Russia and is sold in the U.S. by SHERP of New England (www.sherpne.com). It can carry multiple people, overcome obstacles up to 27 inches high, climb a 35-degree slope, and run through deep mud or snow. Oh, it can also drive on water and ice. e unique and massive tires of the SHERP prevent the vehicle from sinking as it moves across even deep water at speeds up to 3 mph. Top speed on dry land is 25 mph. SHERPs have been used to rescue people who have fallen into frozen lakes, for search and rescue in the harshest terrain, and in wildland fire fighting. During OCR's hurricane scenario, a SHERP drove out of the woods, across a creek, and into the pond where the training was occurring. SEEING IT WORK One of the aspects of OCR that sets it apart from many other law enforcement training exercises is that it is a combined training exercise, technology demonstration, and trade show. After each scenario the attendees were taken to an exhibition hall where Verizon and Nokia partners showed the tech that was demonstrated during the scenarios. is was very different than most trade shows in that it was organized by scenario. e technology on display at the trade show and demonstrat- ed in the training village scenarios is extensively vetted to make sure it can do the job, according to Verizon. "We've seen it all work," says Nick Nilan, director of public sector product develop- ment at Verizon Enterprise Solutions. Brett Railey, former chief of police for Winter Park, FL, says one of the great benefits of OCR for law enforcement is that of- ficers can see that the technology works before they buy it or even test it in house. "In the real world, we have to be careful about spending money. Operation Convergent Response is an interac- tive and immersive trade show where you get to see the technol- ogy work before you acquire it," Railey says. e dates for next year's Operation Convergent Response have not been set. But Nilan says the company plans to continue the event, and it hopes attendance by law enforcement will grow. "e goal here is to show first responders tools that can im- prove their missions," Nilan says. "OCR is open to anybody and everybody in public safety whether they are federal, state, or lo- cal. We want everybody to be able to see this." VERIZON'S FIRST RESPONDER NETWORK O ne of the technologies that was being demonstrated at Operation Convergent Response but wasn't vis- ible to anyone was Verizon's dedicated first responder network called Private Responder Core. "It was the connective tissue for the entire event," says Nick Nilan, director of public sector product development at Verizon Enterprise Solutions. The Private Responder Core separates first responder data and voice traffic from Verizon's other cellular cus- tomers and provides secure remote access to apps and other tools for public safety professionals. Key features of the Core include both priority and preemption. "The user is predefined as public safety so that when- ever they use the Core they have priority," Niland says. With preemption, when traffic on the network gets so heavy that a pre-identified Core user's communications could drop off, the Core user's communication is given enhanced access, even if that means other users' com- munications fail. "Preemption is always available," Niland says. "The Core makes the decision based on traffic lev- el." The Core's preemption capabilities were tested at last year's Rose Parade, Niland adds, and they worked exactly as expected. Individual first responders can sign up for Private Re- sponder Core at a Verizon store or through Verizon customer service. Agencies can also sign up for the service. For more information, go to www.verizonenterprise.com/support. The SHERP ATV (above) can literally drive on water. (Left) there were so many drones and aircraft used during OCR that some scenarios had "air bosses" to monitor them. THE TACTICAL TECHNOLOGY SHOW

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