Jefferson County, Alabama

News and Announcements


Jefferson County Switches to New Radio System -- Now All 65 Partnering Agencies Across the City and County Are On The Same System

Birmingham,AL (Aug 2, 2019) – Jefferson County’s Information Technology ServicesDepartment, announced today the successful upgrade to Motorola’s P25 Technologyfor all County offices, first responders, Jefferson County EMA and 911 centers.This puts the County in sync with 65 partnering agencies across the County forinteroperable communications, especially in times of a wide-scale naturaldisaster.

TheMotorola ASTRO 25 land-mobile network is built with multiple layers ofresilience to withstand storms such as tornadoes, flooding and other naturaldisasters, ensuring better communication between agencies.

“Our IT Department collaborated with both the Jefferson County EMA, 911 centerand Birmingham 911 departments to upgrade to this new technology, which nowmeans all emergency responders are on the same system and should be ablecommunicate seamlessly,” said Jefferson County Chief Information Officer, SriKarra. “This new technology should dramatically improve communications for allinvolved in public safety – especially in disaster or emergency situations.”

Thecut-over to the new system was completed July 31, and the old system has beendecommissioned. Dispatchers at 10 different 911 call centers are now using MotorolaSolutions MCC7500 dispatch consoles to connect directly with first respondersand partner agencies. And more than 9,000 Motorola two-way radios are beingused in partner agencies.

“Whilethis is something that the citizens of Jefferson County can’t physically see –it is definitely something that we needed to do to be able to respond quicker,and more efficiently in a time of crisis,” said Jefferson County Manager andCEO Tony Petelos. “We certainly don’t want to have another tornado or natural disaster,but if we do, this enables our first responders to be able to communicatebetter with all agencies involved.” 

“Transitionsto new technology can be risky, especially when it involves first respondersand 911 operations,” said Jefferson County Commissioner Joe Knight. “We hadconfidence that our IT teams working with Motorola and partnering agenciescould make this a seamless transition, and they did. Kudos to Greg Silas andDonnie West for making this vision a reality.”

Motorola Solutions has been a partner with both JeffersonCounty and the City of Birmingham for 20 years.