Oregon approves ‘FirstNet’ for first responders

Salem, Ore.– The states of Oregon and Washington are opting into a wireless broadband network for first responders.

Governor Kate Brown, along with Washington Governor Jay Inslee, announced the decision to provide a telecommunication network for the states’ public safety community.

The First Responder Network Authority or FirstNet will be provided to the two states by AT&T after proposals were submitted to the states. One reason the states chose AT&T was due to ” their commitment to provide additional tower investments in both states.”

The network will be separate from general public use in order to give first responders such as police, fire and EMS faster paths to communicate important information with each other.

“It’s gonna give us fast data information back and forth, cell communication if we need to talk to a hospital,” said Medford Fire-Rescue Chief, Brian Fish. “Or we need to talk to a command center out in the field.”

Officials say the change will be significant for rural counties where there’s limited service for first responders to communicate.

The new service is expected to roll out in the new year.

© 2024 KOBI-TV NBC5. All rights reserved unless otherwise stated.

Skip to content