Australia evolves to nationwide next-generation emergency call handling with Comtech Solacom Technol
Comtech Telecommunications Corp. has announced that its subsidiary, Comtech Solacom Technologies, Inc. (Solacom), which is part of Comtech’s Commercial Solutions segment, will provide call handling systems and solutions to Telstra as the initial answer point for the entire population of Australia, for efficient management of emergency calls from across the country. Telstra, the Australian telecommunications provider that is responsible for the country’s emergency call handling services, recently confirmed the nationwide deployment of Solacom’s Guardian systems and solutions when it announced the opening of a new, 24-hour Triple Zero contact center in Adelaide.
A Triple Zero (000) contact center in Australia is the equivalent of a 911 public safety answering point (PSAP) in North America. The new 20-position contact center in Adelaide is connected to the country’s other two contact centers in Sydney and Melbourne. With a third Triple Zero contact center, Telstra has more flexibility to handle peak call volumes, increase staffing levels, and provide an additional layer of assurance for citizens.
Together, the three Solacom Guardian-powered contact centers will handle the more than 8.9 million Triple Zero calls that are made in Australia each year.
“Delivering more advanced emergency call handling services is critical to improving our national public safety infrastructure and ensuring all Australians have the fastest possible access to emergency assistance when they need it most,” says the Hon Paul Fletcher, Australia’s federal minister for communications, cyber safety, and the arts. Telstra’s three Triple Zero contact centers are designed so that the first available agent at any center answers the call, no matter where the call originates.
“We take our responsibility to manage Triple Zero calls across the country very seriously,” says Jane Elkington, principal, Triple Zero, Telstra. “By upgrading to the next-generation Solacom solutions, we have an advanced, digital platform that allows us to roll out important new capabilities in the short and longer terms. We’ll start in May 2020 with Advanced Mobile Location (AML), which enables emergency services personnel to more accurately pinpoint the location of people calling from mobile devices. In the future, we’ll have the ability to provide multimedia contact options such as messaging and video calling.”
Solacom Guardian call handling systems and solutions provide the most flexible multimedia call handling and management available. The full-featured, purpose-built offerings are engineered from the ground up and the inside out to provide complete, multimedia call control for any size of operation — from two-position centers to statewide or nationwide deployments. They provide all of the functionality needed to manage emergency calls in any format, collect real-time information from any source, and speed delivery of rich situational awareness data to emergency response teams.
Because Guardian solutions are designed to simplify ongoing evolution, they can be easily extended to include Guardian Text, an integrated service for Text-to-911 and Text-from-911 calls, as well as future additions of real-time texting, and Guardian Map, an interactive 3D geolocation and mapping application. To help streamline its operations and meet compliance requirements, Telstra also implemented Solacom Guardian call reporting, an innovative application that collects, records, and analyzes call data.
“We’re very proud to be partnering with Telstra as they bring next-generation emergency call handling and management services to all Australians,” says Solacom President, Pierre Plangger. “Australia’s nationwide deployment, strong focus on accelerating emergency call response times, and vision to support multimedia calling are models for every organization planning their evolution to next-generation emergency services. We look forward to strengthening our partnership with Telstra and to providing the technology needed for AML and other enhanced features to help keep Australians safe.”