Monroeville, PA to Cut Emergency Response Times with ASAP

On December 19, Monroeville became the first municipality in the Pittsburgh area to implement the Automated Secure Alarm Protocol (ASAP), a service designed to automate communication between alarm monitoring central stations and public safety dispatch/911 centers. Monroeville is the 32nd “PSAP” in the United States and second in Pennsylvania to connect with ASAP.

“Every second counts in emergencies,” said Monroeville Chief of Police Doug Cole. “With ASAP, we’ll be able to reduce call-processing times to provide quicker and more accurate emergency response to Monroeville citizens.”

Electronic data transmission results in the following benefits for residents and first responders:

  • Fewer phone calls to emergency response centers. Alarm center data is passed to public safety dispatch/911 operators electronically within seconds and then provided to first responders upon dispatch to the location.ASAP-Concept1D
  • Quicker processing times. Data doesn’t have to be input manually or communicated verbally, resulting in reduced hold times, less chance of human error and faster responses.
  • Greater accuracy of information transmitted.
  • More prompt action during natural disasters. It’s common for public safety dispatch/911 centers to be overwhelmed with calls during these types of emergencies.

Monroeville receives 2,500 calls at its dispatch center monthly. Historically, its average alarm response time has been between two to four minutes. With ASAP delivering alarm notification information directly from central stations to public safety answering points (PSAPs) and public safety dispatch centers via computer rather than by phone, the municipality expects alarm response times to drop to a minute and half or less. These benefits will extend across Monroeville police, fire and emergency medical services, and Pitcairn police and emergency medical services, according to Monroeville’s statement.

For more information about ASAP, visit tma.us/asap.

Source: PRNewswire

Guilford County PSAP Reports on ASAP Implementation

 

Guilford County (Greenboro, NC) is one of the most recent PSAPs to implement the ASAP service. We recently checked in with Clay Kennedy, Guilford Metro 911 Systems Administrator, on how the implementation went and what results he’s seen since.

ASAP: Why did your PSAP adopt ASAP?

Kennedy: We implemented this because Guilford Metro 911 looked at is as a revolutionary interface. Any time we can streamline calls with accurate information ruling out human errors is always a plus. This interface has already proven to be faster than the old way of reporting alarms to our 911 agency.

ASAP: What your experience with the process of getting connected?

Kennedy: The overall experience was good. The biggest issue was trying to implement a production and a training side. Within NC, this is not possible because the state switch only routes it to one ORI. Once we put this interface into production, we did not migrate it back to training. All test calls with new alarm companies were sent to the live side. Bill Hobgood is one heck of a consultant and is knowledgeable about how the setup is between our CAD system and the ASAP-to-PSAP interface. The most time-consuming piece is the address verification between our PSAP and the alarm companies of what they have in their database. With this being a newish interface, our CAD vendor’s implementation team had somewhat of a learning curve. Once it was set up and running, it was solid. We do have to restart our message switch if the State of NC does anything on their end that is state-switch related. Our alarm company, in the ASAP program, notifies us of failed responses from our systems when the State does switch maintenance.

ASAP: What have been your initial findings since ASAP has been implemented? 

Kennedy: Our agency’s calls via ASAP-to-PSAP average three seconds to route the call for dispatch. We currently have Vector Security; nine more are connecting to us soon. I would say we are still in our beginning stages to see a significant decrease in call volume. Our telecommunicators prefer the ASAP-to-PSAP method and we are keeping with the industry trends, resulting in a win-win overall.

ASAP: Any other thoughts on the process or outcomes?

Kennedy: Bill Hobgood does an outstanding job coordinating and communicating between the PSAP and the alarm companies. I love how the interface looks on SunGard’s end. The Nature Code Translation table is easy to set up and get to. If we want to create rejection rules for areas or specific calls then we can do so. Even though the phone call is not there in this interface, our telecommunicators, field responders, and Alarm Companies can communicate via messaging through the CAD system and across the PSAP and state message switches. Streamlining processes, cutting back on human errors, and faster response times with quality information are items that should be embraced in the field of 911 technologies.

 

 

Find out more about ASAP.

 

Mark Baum to Head ASAP Outreach Committee

Mark Baum headshotThe chair of the ASAP Outreach Committee plays a critical role in advancing the ASAP service by coordinating volunteers effort to unite PSAPs and alarm companies. CSAA is pleased to announce that Mark Baum, Program Manager, Information Technology for Protection One, assumed this role in May. Baum has been working in the security industry for fifteen years with much of this time spent as a project manager for data conversion and system integration projects.  He has been working with ASAP for the last 4 years.

As well as leading personal outreach to PSAPs around the country, the commASAP-Concept1Dittee members have coordinated resources such as training materials, videos, and data collection for PSAPs to spur program growth.

CSAA thanks past chairs Kathleen Schraufnagel and Joe Carr for their efforts on behalf of the committee for the last several years.

Find out more about ASAP at csaaintl.org/asap.

Guilford County, NC is Latest PSAP to Go Live with ASAP

ASAP-Concept1DOn January 26, the Metro Guilford/Greensboro, NC PSAP officially went live with the ASAP program.

“The addition of Guilford Metro 9-1-1 is a major project milestone and a win-win for the citizens and businesses of Guilford County, the City of Greensboro and the alarm industry,” said Bill Hobgood, ASAP Project Subject-Matter-Expert with the City of Richmond, VA, one of the two original ASAP pilot sites. “It is exciting to see PSAPs step up to take advantage of the benefits that the ASAP program offers, while generating greater customer satisfaction. Guilford Metro 9-1-1 is to be applauded.”

The Metro Guilford 911 administration and local media collaborated to inform local citizens of the benefits of the new service. Check out the news videos below:

The first alarm company to be connected to Guilford is Vector Security.  “We will be bringing up other central stations during the month of February with Metro Guilford,” said Hobgood.

ASAP was launched in 2011 as a public-private partnership, designed to increase the efficiency and reliability of emergency electronic signals from central station alarm companies to Public Safety Answering Points (PSAPs). ASAP utilizes ANSI standard protocols developed cooperatively by the Association of Public Communications Officials (APCO) and the Central Station Alarm Association (CSAA).

With ASAP, critical life safety signals and accurate information is processed more quickly, through the Nlets system of state-to-state PSAP communication, insuring that complete and accurate information is transmitted to the PSAP every time. The ASAP program has the potential to save PSAPs and emergency services millions of dollars.

Implementation of the ASAP service is expected to surge in 2016. Interested PSAPs and alarm companies should contact asap@csaaintl.org for more information, or visit the ASAP website.

 

New Year’s ASAP® News: Vivint is Latest Company to Connect

Implementation of the “Automated Secure Alarm Protocol” is Building Nationwide;
Boca Raton is First Connected PSAP in Florida

VIENNA, VA (January 12, 2016) – Vivint, one of the largest smart home technology providers in North America with more than one million customers, is the latest national alarm company to go live with ASAP®.

“We are very pleased to announce that Vivint has completed testing and officially is live with ASAP messaging,” said CSAA President Pamela J. Petrow. “They join the ever-growing list of companies actively participating in this technology and further increasing our accuracy and speed at getting emergency information to the first responders.”

“We are excited to be live with our first PSAP—Richmond, VA,” said Amy Becht, Vivint Director of Central Stations. “We plan on steadily adding additional PSAPs in the coming weeks.”

CSAA announced in December that Vector Security and Rapid Response went operational in production with Boca Raton on December 16, followed by Monitronics on December 17. This is the first ASAP implementation in the state of Florida. “We had great momentum throughout 2015 and look forward to the continuation of added PSAPs and connected alarm companies in 2016,” said Petrow.

ASAP-Concept1DASAP was launched in 2011 as a public-private partnership, designed to increase the efficiency and reliability of emergency electronic signals from central station alarm companies to Public Safety Answering Points (PSAPs). ASAP utilizes ANSI standard protocols developed cooperatively by the Association of Public Communications Officials (APCO) and the Central Station Alarm Association (CSAA).

With ASAP, critical life safety signals and accurate information is processed more quickly, through the Nlets system of state-to-state PSAP communication, insuring that complete and accurate information is transmitted to the PSAP every time. The ASAP program has the potential to save PSAPs and emergency services millions of dollars.

For more information on ASAP or to access ASAP resources (videos, webinars, training and outreach materials), contact CSAA at asap@csaaintl.org or 703-242-4670, or visit csaaintl.org/asap.

 

ASAP® Network Widens with Addition of CMS

Implementation of the “Automated Secure Alarm Protocol” is Building Nationwide

ASAP-Concept1DCriticom Monitoring Services (CMS), one of the largest wholesale alarm monitoring companies in the United States, went live with ASAP® in the city of Richmond, VA on October 21. “Awareness of ASAP’s very real benefits to PSAPs is spreading,” said Jay Hauhn, executive director of CSAA. “The program gathers momentum with each prestigious national monitoring company that comes on board. Having CMS go live is a big step in the process of implementing this service around the nation.”

“CMS is now live with its ASAP-to-PSAP adoption,” commented Tony Wilson, President, CMS. “Our hope is that the ASAP program will increase the speed and accuracy of our dispatches.” CMS serves more than 3,500 alarm companies and their 800,000 customers. Their broad range of monitoring services includes response to security, fire, Personal Emergency Response Systems (PERS), environmental and interactive services such as two-way voice and remote video.

“It took about a year to launch the ASAP program,” continued Wilson. “We did this intentionally so that we could minimize the impact to our dealers. ASAP-to-PSAP is currently implemented for our 21 dealers located in the city of Richmond, VA; this affects approximately 500 subscriber accounts. Our Richmond contact, Bill Hobgood, was an excellent resource and helped to make this project easier. Our operators are excited for this new technology to communicate dispatches electronically and can’t wait for more and more PSAPs to follow suit. Over the next few weeks we will begin working on expanding our ASAP implementation to include our dealers located in Henrico County, VA and Washington, DC.”

Read the complete announcement at CSAA News.

Diebold is Latest Central Station to Go Live with ASAP®

ASAP-Concept1DDiebold, Incorporated, a global provider of integrated self-service solutions, security systems and services, went live with ASAP® in the city of Richmond, VA on September 9. “The momentum with ASAP continues as we add another national provider,” said CSAA President Pamela J. Petrow. “We are excited to have Diebold now transmitting alarm activity through the network and look forward to their expansion into additional cities.”

“With ASAP, priority alarm signals are processed within seconds, not minutes, ensuring that complete and accurate information is transmitted from the Diebold Monitoring Center to the PSAP every time,” said Damon Kanzler, Diebold electronic security, vice president, centralized services and business processes. “This time savings will improve dispatching services for Diebold customers while reducing the volume of time-consuming alarm calls to local PSAPs and increase our dispatcher productivity.”

Read the complete story.