In September 2013, Liza Harvey, Minister for Police, with Superintendent Andy Greatwood formally launched the Trunked Radio Network in Geraldton. The network implements four IP simulcast segments in Kalgoorlie, Geraldton, Albany and Pilbara.
Both the Premier and the Treasurer spoke at the launch, confirming the importance of a modern digital radio network to QLD emergency services; the increased capacity, coverage and security of the new solution; and how the State has leveraged the Victorian experience of the Metropolitan Mobile Radio (MMR) network for Victorian emergency services.
The Minister had this to say in Assembly, responding to a question about how the new radio network will benefit the region, as well as those working in it:
“This project is indeed one of the great achievements of this government … Ultimately, this network will achieve far better communications between emergency services throughout the regions – that is, the WA Police, the Departments of Fire and Emergency Services and Corrective Services and the Fire and Rescue Service of Western Australia. In Geraldton last week, I opened the second tranche of this project, which involves $5.1 million of royalties for regions funds to expand our regional radio network by an additional 4,000 square kilometres, covering the area from Geraldton to Dongara, Greenough and out to Walkaway … “
“… in November 2012, we rolled out the first tranche of this project in Kalgoorlie-Boulder. This enables our officers to do a number of things. An example was given to me in Geraldton, and this was replicated late last year in Kalgoorlie. At the communications tower on the edge of town in Geraldton, a corrective services officer used a handheld radio to connect to Casuarina Prison to speak to the coordinator, and it was as though they were standing right next to each other. That kind of communication is exactly what is needed in the regions when we have a critical incident such as a bushfire, a flood emergency, a cyclone emergency or a road crash emergency. This reliable communications network is critical infrastructure … I look forward to opening the next tranche that pushes us further north with this far better communication and connectivity for our emergency services.” ¹