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Lafayette 911 moving to cloud-based dispatch system

Posted at 2:24 PM, Mar 19, 2019
and last updated 2019-03-19 19:42:01-04

Lafayette Parish Communication District is getting some new software.

The software is a cloud-based solution that will ensure that 911 never goes down, regardless of the disaster that might hit the parish, said Craig Stansbury, director of Lafayette 911 and Emergency Preparedness.

“Obviously, 911 can’t go down. It needs to be up and running, 24/7. People rely on that when there is an emergency. They need help. That’s what 911 was created for. It’s critical,” Stansbury said. “We’re going to try to make sure the citizens of Lafayette Parish will always have access to 911.”

The parish’s 911 system handles calls for help that need to be routed to Lafayette Police, Lafayette Sheriff’s deputies, Lafayette Firefighters and Acadian Ambulance. To do that, Stansbury’s staff uses a computer-aided dispatch system that’s currently server based.

To try to ensure continuity, even in a disaster, there’s a back-up system, with identical servers and equipment. But that’s expensive to maintain and in some disasters both systems go down, as recently happened in other parts of the country, Stansbury said.

“This cloud-based system allows us to go to any location, anywhere, we don’t need extra equipment, just internet access, and we can have whole system up and running,” Stansbury said. “In case of an event like this, Lafayette Parish will be ready to respond.”

The software solution, produced by Mark43, will cost the system $1.5 million to $2 million to install, Stansbury said. He said he believes it’s the first cloud-based CAD system to be used in Louisiana.

“We are thrilled to power public safety processes for the entire Lafayette Parish Communication District,” said Mark43 Co-Founder and CEO Scott Crouch. “Emergencies leave no room for inefficiency. That’s why we build our technology to support and connect everyone involved in the public safety process, from the dispatchers in the emergency communication centers to the first responders out in the field.”

For more information about Mark43’s CAD system, visit the company’s website here.