Text Messaging Request

The Lawrence County Department of Public Safety offers a secondary means of receiving dispatch information to the first responders we serve.  This is done through a text/SMS paging interface that is connected to the 9-1-1 Center's Computer Aided Dispatch System.  This service is only available to verified first responders in Lawrence County.  Below are some common questions and answers regarding the text paging system:
How does the text paging system work?
When a unit (your station) is dispatched in CAD, a message is triggered to the paging system.  That message is sent to all users associated with a particular station.
What kind of device is necessary to receive the pages?
Any alphanumeric pager, cell phone or smart phone that is capable of receiving text messages can be use as long as it has a TAP dialin number or an email address associated with it.  We have successfully utilized the system with all of the major wireless carriers in Lawrence County, including AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, Nextel and email.
Is there any delay in receiving the message?
Delays are generally on the part of your wireless carrier.  We have no control over that.  However, the system normally sends the messages out immediately and on average you receive them while the radio tones are going out.
Is this meant to replace traditional tone paging with fire pagers?
Absolutely not.  If you sign up for this, you must realize that this is just an alternate means of receiving notifications.  Do not rely on this system, because it is dependent on private wireless carriers.  The tone alert pages will remain as our primary means of notification.
What does one of the messages look like?
Although it may vary by carrier, generally they look like below:

Aug 23 2010 19:53 911-CENTER:FAC >FIRE ALARM-COMMERCIAL 110 E LINCOLN XS: BOYLES AVE NEW CASTLE CITY LAWRENCE COUNTY 9-1-1 7246569300 Map: Grids:0,0 Cad: 2010-00000123456

Is there any cost for this service?
There is no cost from the Lawrence County Department of Public Safety to receive the text messages.  However, be aware, that you may need to assume any costs that your wireless service provider may charge for text messaging.  Check with your carrier for costs related to receiving text messages or emails on your device.

If you are interested in this service, please contact your fire chief.  Each department has been distributed the appropriate paperwork to enroll members into the system.  We do not take individual requests to add to the system---you must be enrolled by your agency administrator (i.e. Fire Chief, Police Chief, EMS Manager).  If you are a chief, you may enroll a group of members by sending this form, FRM-015 CAD Text Messaging Registration, to our office via fax at (724) 658-5760 or to lcema@co.lawrence.pa.us.