Yes, firefighters need pagers.
Sometimes…pagers get a bad rap. They are limited in range. They provide one-way communication only. They are often considered to be old technology. If a page is missed, there is no way to retrieve it.
Yet…time and again, in times of incredible emergency, the pager emerges as a necessary tool for first responders. Consider the findings of the After Action Report which reviewed the emergency response to 9/11.
“Almost all aspects of communications continue to be problematic, from initial notification to tactical operations…Pagers seemed to be the most reliable means of notification.”
There is a reason that pagers continue to endure. Simply put, pagers do one thing and they do it well. Pagers and pager networks are used solely by first responders and the communications that travel over these networks are for emergency responders only.
Pagers can and should, however, be supplemented…complimented by technology that provides redundancy and more communication channels.
PageQ supplements pager communications
PageQ is a page record and relay solution that provides redundancy to pagers and peace of mind to firefighters. It is a component of the FireQ fire department management solution that captures and records emergency pages and sends them to firefighters via text, phone, email, and push notification.
It provides plug and play simplicity and does not require a fire department to lease specialized equipment. It requires only that a radio or scanner be connected to the host computer that is running FireQ and PageQ. It listens for the unique tones of a fire department. These tones activate the PageQ module which captures and records the dispatch message that follows the tones. Firefighters, then, receive the emergency alerts in multiple ways:
- Within the FireQ app
- Via a real text message with a link to an audio recording of the original page
- Via email
- Via phone call
Firefighters can replay the original page multiple times, if needed because a recording of the original page is available to firefighters through the app, via text, and email.
The PageQ Difference
PageQ is different, more complete, and just better than most page relay systems. The PageQ design comes from a place that recognizes that the resources of fire departments are not always the same, not always equal. It captures and processes raw audio differently than other page relay products, making it faster. This can be especially beneficial for fire departments with slower internet speeds.
Perhaps, more importantly, PageQ also sends a real text message. Many people don’t know that there are two types of text messages and, when received on a cellular phone, they look exactly the same. Most page relay solutions offer an email-to-text message which is a message that is created and sent like an email, but it is received as a text message. An email address is created using a cellular phone number. Delivery relies on a number of inter-connected servers which can slow delivery and there is no way to track if a message has been successfully delivered. It is also not possible to reply to a text message sent in this way.
PageQ text messages, however, are true-type text messages (also known as SMS or short message service). A true-type text is a message sent from one cellular phone number to another. Page Q messages are via a single phone number that is unique to each fire department. On cellular networks, true-type texts have a higher priority than email for transmission which ensures more reliable delivery. Text messages also provide delivery reporting. True type text messages can also be received by firefighters who may not be using a smartphone.
PageQ also offers firefighters the ability to signal their intent to respond to an emergency in more ways than most other systems. Firefighters can respond through the app or to the phone call. They can also respond to the text message because PageQ sends a real text message.
More ways of receiving emergency alerts ensures that more firefighters receive them; and, when more firefighters receive them, more firefighters are able to respond.
Wanna know more?
watch this video
Wanna try it?
Fire departments can try it for themselves to see how it works and how easy it is to set up. Visit the PageQ page and book a demo or call 888-600-7122 for more information.