By Danika Katnik/

The system that notifies first responders when a call of service is requested in Livingston County could be improved with a new project.

The Livingston County 911 Center sends alert tones through a Very High Frequency (VHF) system to EMS and/or fire department personnel when a call for service is requested. According to 911 Director Chad Chewning, this call is most important when responders are on-call or work 24-hour shifts.

Chewning reports the current paging system is consistently experiencing patchy communications and periods of outages in the areas including Hartland, Brighton, Howell, Green Oak and Hamburg. In those areas, the alerting system primarily runs on shared fiber, which is not necessarily dedicated to public safety use, nor is it easily accessible for repair in a timely manner.

Chewning says a solution to creating a more reliable and robust system is to install additional VHF microwaves throughout the affected areas; thus creating a link that would tie-in to the existing VHF microwave system that is currently operating successfully.

A resolution from Livingston County 911 seeking a supplemental appropriation to effectuate the project recently came before a county subcommittee and received unanimous support. It must next receive approval from the full Board of Commissioners.