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Implementing E911? Prepare Now for NG911

By Nick Maier

If your organization is currently implementing or considering an enhanced 911 solution for your multi-line telephone system don’t back yourself into a standards corner by ignoring the industry movement toward what the National Emergency Number Association is calling NG911, or next generation 911.

The recent successful completion of the first round of interoperability testing represented a significant milestone toward NG911 and the industry’s efforts to overhaul the nation’s 911 systems – our literal lifeline to emergency services like police, fire and ambulance services. It stands to reason that any E911 solution that equips IP call servers, PBX (News - Alert) and Centrex systems to manage and deliver the exact whereabouts of a distressed caller to emergency dispatchers will need to integrate seamlessly with these new 911 systems and standards.

NG E911 solutions are no longer theoretical, but available today. These solutions future proof your organization by delivering location information management and 911 call routing capability through the deployment of methods and processes that are compliant with the new emerging standards.

The use of open standards improves interoperability among multiple vendor systems, and a standards-based IP platform will enable receipt of emergency calls and subsequent sharing of information from communications channels other than traditional voice, such as native VoIP, video, pictures, automatic collision notifications and SMS text among networked public safety agencies.

If you’re in the process of making a decision on an enterprise E911 solution for your organization, ask your vendor for details on how their solution is designed to meet the emerging NG911 standards. Probe their understanding of these standards. Find out if they are participating on the NENA and Internet Engineering Task Force committees that are crafting these critical new requirements and standards.

As an alternative, you can always start setting aside dollars to fund the replacement of your new E911 solution when NG911 becomes a reality. IT

Nick Maier is senior vice president of RedSky (News - Alert) Technologies (

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