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Collar number With access to police radio, the CCTV opera- tors can now speak with specifi c offi cers direct, through person-to-person calls. “It’s all based on a collar number system, so

the radio pops up with the collar number”, Paul explains. “Or if we program the Cyfas system with that particular offi cer’s details, the details will pop up on-screen, so we know who they are. If we want a point-to-point with them, we can actually press on the touchscreen, hit their name and we can speak to just that one offi cer. And we can do the same with the town centre. “In the old days, if somebody keyed up but didn’t actually speak, with the old radio we wouldn’t necessarily know who had keyed up. Now, with the Cyfas system, we’ve set all the daytime and night-time economy list of contacts in the database. And the second that somebody hits the push-to-talk – because the trunked radio gives you the radio number – we instantly know who is calling, or who has hit an emergency panic button.

“And we also fi nd it much easier callouts

whether to particular

to do sites,

that be a pri-

vate call or whether it’s a group call. We can just hit minimal buttons to make that call. It’s basic

in its own

operation and easy for

the learn to use.”

Good news Not all UK police forces

to operators areas, staff to

Greater Manchester, direct contact has been producing pleasing results.

“T ere are lots of stories about the way that we’ve operated with the police directly over the last six months and lots of good news stories which I’m sure the staff could give”, says Paul. “Sometimes it’s us listening to the radio and saying, ‘T ey walked down such and such a street and I bet they’ve gone that way’. Some- times

it’s are willing

allow CCTV to


direct to their offi cers: in many

the room, to the

operator must instead contact control the

police and

control room

will then decide what information


to the offi cers on the beat or in patrol cars. But

in Connecting up

Besides looking forward to bringing some of the area’s other CCTV operations into the con- trol room, Paul Bolton is also working towards closer integration. “If you go in there now, you’ll see those four monitors which do all our CCTV, mapping and access to your standard Windows email packages and things.

“T e Cyfas system currently is on a little monitor at the side, only because it was an afterthought in the sense of it

intelligence-led and sometimes it’s

direct instructions and sometimes it’s us getting back to the police saying, ‘We’ve seen this, can you attend, please?’ ”

From a desk nearby, one of the operators adds: “We used to have police coming of a weekend, looking at night-time disorder, and they found they could have one person moni- toring the cameras, which would do the work of 20 on the street.”

wasn’t designed in the original setup.” Paul would now like to simplify the desk

layout by bringing the radio controls within the Synergy screen environment. T ere will be policy hurdles to be overcome as well as techni- cal issues, but he is hopeful that they can be resolved. “Obviously the police are very keen that at no point could any of their traffi c be cross-patched to anything else”, he explains. “At the minute, the Cyfas system, from a network point of view, sits absolutely alone; it’s not net- worked with anything else. “If you did link it through to the rest of the

software that sits on the NCP network, the police have some issues around that – so that would need a bit of work, working with IT people, to come up with a solution that would be acceptable to the police.” Another development, Paul adds, is that

NCP – Bolton’s CCTV and parking contractor – is on the point of starting a three-month trial of DMR digital mobile radios in the Farnworth town centre and Bolton town centre pub-watch schemes. A MotoTrbo radio system is being supplied by Apex Radio Systems, of Newcastle upon Tyne. Initially, control room staff will use hand-held radios to respond to calls; but the bigger plan, if the trial is successful, is to inte- grate the DMR network fully with the control room system through the Cyfas’s C-Soft screens – with mapping, if funds permit.

Fred Dibnah, the Bolton steeplejack – engineering enthusiast, television personality, raconteur and a well-remembered local hero. A special Dibcam keeps an eye on his statue in the town centre

22 LAND mobile October 2011

C-Soft Plus, by Cyfas: this screen, a part of each operator’s workstation, provides fi ngertip access to all fi ve radio channels, including police Airwave talkgroups. A useful feature is a button which replays the last 30 seconds of speech, so that doubtful words can be repeated

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