Greer police implementing new state-wide communication system - FOX Carolina 21

Greer police implementing new state-wide communication system

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GREER, SC (FOX Carolina) -

One of an officer's most vital tools in the field is their radio, but at Greer Police Department, the current system is behind the times.

"Our radios that we have right now are currently 400 MHz radios,” said Lt. Patrick Fortenberry. “It’s an older system. It's nearing the end of its age."

Greer Police are looking to purchase more than 100 new 800 MHz radios and systems, which could cost up to $250,000, according to Lt. Fortenberry.

"The city has allocated half of the funds for the general budget," said Fortenberry. "Then we're going to use federal seizure money for the other half of that."

The Palmetto 800 radios have a stronger signal and will allow Greer police officers to communicate directly with other agencies. Right now, they have to go through their own dispatch to speak with the fire department or EMS.

The new radios would eliminate issues with signal dead spots, which are areas where their radios won't work. This is crucial, according to Greer Fire Chief, Dorian Flowers.

"We work very closely with our law enforcement here in the city, and of course with other,” explained Chief Flowers.

Lt. Marcus Kelley with the operations and support division says implementing the new technology now, rather than later, is important because of the city's growing population.

"The population size has exploded and we have got a lot of territory on the outlines of places in the city,” he said.

No matter where an officer is in the city, police say the new system will get them information, right from the source.

"When you get information firsthand, it’s the most accurate information that you get,” said Fortenberry. 

Greer police expect to have everything up and running by the first quarter of 2018.

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