14 Jan 09. Tube emergency radio rolled out. A digital radio communications system for the police is now fully operational in all London’s Underground stations. It comes after a London Assembly report in 2006 said poor communication had hampered rescuers after the 7 July 2005 terror attacks on the transport system. Fire crews and ambulance staff use similar systems, although neither has been fully rolled out. Meanwhile, concerns have emerged about whether the police network will cope with demands during the 2012 Olympics. The Commons home affairs committee has said the network “struggles” when large numbers of users are concentrated in the same area. And a security source told the BBC the system could collapse as demand is expected to increase in 2012 by 25-30%. Experts, however, are preparing to equip Airwave with extra capacity in time for the London Games. It is understood the roll-out of Airwave handsets to all ambulance staff is still taking place. Fire Brigade units have a system they say works underground and is inter-operable with Airwave – but not all crews currently have been given access. Policing Minister Vernon Coaker said the Airwave system for police had been delivered “ahead of schedule”. He said: “The Airwave system plays a vital part in keeping passengers safe. (Source: BBC)
08 Jan 09. The Ministry of Justice of Cyprus has placed an order for two AW139 medium twin engine helicopters. These aircraft will be used to perform law enforcement and search and rescue operations. This success follows on from the contract signed by the Ministry of Defence of Cyprus in December 2008 for three AW139s and is further evidence of the increasing success this model has found in the medium twin market where it continues to be the best selling helicopter.
06 Jan 09. Northrop Grumman Corporation has been awarded a contract potentially valued at $68m to design, integrate, install and test the U.S. Coast Guard’s Nationwide Automatic Identification System (Nationwide AIS) core data exchange capability. This new capability will serve as the foundation for Nationwide AIS, which will enhance maritime security, marine and navigational safety, search and rescue efforts and environmental protection.