The deal, which has been conducted in two phases, will see Netstar re-architect CFA’s communications network.
The first stage of the project, which was completed in January, involved upgrading the CFA’s existing communications system at its largest incident control centre across Victoria. Netstar used Cisco Catalyst switches and included hardware, software and maintenance. This provided a unified network for data, voice and video. It will also reduce energy costs and the CFA's carbon footprint.
The second stage of the project is underway and aims to enhance communications access to 150, Level 2 Divisional Command bases across the state to Cisco ISR G2 routers. Equipped with 3G routing and WLAN switching, it provides CFA with the ability to deploy or move remote fire-fighting command operations.
“The CFA has more than 60,000 full-time staff and volunteers who work across more than 150,000 square kilometres of land in Victoria,” CFA senior network administrator, Glenn Kerr, said in a statement. “The CFA services over 20 regional areas across Victoria. This represents almost a million homes and about 2.5 million people who can find themselves in life-threatening situations. Therefore, it is critical that our communications network allows us to communicate between our Incident Control Centres and with staff quickly, accurately and effectively in emergency situations.”