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Public Safety DAS

A Public Safety Communications system is a wireless communications system used by first responder and emergency services personnel such as police, fire, emergency medical, homeland security, and disaster response agencies to prevent or respond to incidents or situations that pose a threat to people or property. Venues such as apartment buildings, hotels, and office buildings often have large amounts of people and in the event of a fire or other emergency public officials need to ensure communications during rescue efforts.  These venues are built with energy efficient materials which block public safety signal as an adverse effect. One of the ideal ways to implement security is to deploy a Public Safety distributed antenna systems (DAS) for emergency coverage, which is required by most jurisdictions. Here, we discuss how such a system works, as well as understand why you need to make sure your building is compliant.

How Public Safety DAS Works?

Public Safety DAS systems repeat or enhance public safety radio frequency spectrums of VHF, UHF, and 700 and 800 Mhz bands inside a building by receiving and amplifying the outside signals. The outside signals are routed through active equipment, coaxial cable and antennas. Inside the public safety radios are then able to receive the adequate signal levels for proper communications. Very often, there are legal requirements to have a public safety communication system in place in a structure or prove that signal levels are adequate. The building may fail to get an occupancy permit if it fails the radio communications test or risk penalties and law suits for non-compliance.

The Need for Public Safety DAS

A Public Safety DAS is needed in the building for the same reason as a cellular network DAS is needed in it to ensure that the mobile phone networks are available for operations indoors. Radio signals cannot propagate normally through today’s highly efficient building materials and this means that a normal receiver, radio or mobile device will not work reliably. The installation of such a system may mean the difference between life and death when it helps emergency units to communicate.  You need to also install such a system in older buildings, especially when they are going through a renovation.

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and the International Code Council (ICC) are responsible for developing and almost every city and county in the country complies with these codes. The NFPA and ICC national level model in-building code development is being driven primarily by fire jurisdictions. However, the initiatives are expanded to involve all public safety, including law enforcement and emergency medical services. The NFPA and ICC initiatives are separate but complementary. While the precise provisions of the draft codes vary between the two code development groups, key specifications involve significant commonality across the two initiatives. In addition, all the features of existing local codes are permissible under the new draft national level code framework. Each jurisdiction can “customize” the national level model code to meet any unique local requirements.

Cablelytics 360 uses the cumulative experience of our engineers and project managers for a complete 360 understanding of the important requirements, such as uplink and downlink budgets, signal propagation, signal to noise ratios and interference.