Some 1,000 police stations have closed across the UK in the last ten years, but police in North Wales are using cutting edge technology to reintroduce many of the benefits of traditional policing. A new 3.5 million pounds mobile wireless system will put officers back into the front line and into the community.The system will provide officers with mobile data links and allow them to file reports remotely, rather than returning to the station. Traveling to the station in North Wales is a crucial factor because of the long distances involved. The force serves a population of 660,000 people, spread over 617,700 hectares of rural as well as fast-growing urban areas.
The mobile technology will include 1,000 handheld personal digital assistants and 200 in-vehicle computers with pocket PCs. It is believed that this is the first time in UK policing, that the power of a full command and control plus records management system has been extended to mobile officers in the field, using wireless technology. Officers will also be able to receive and send text messages and make enquiries, with access to database information
It is estimated that the time officers will spend out of the station will increase by over 15% following the introduction of the new technology and the new proposals for cutting red tape across the police service. This is equivalent to increasing police numbers by over 150 officers.
The system has been provided by Intergraph Public Safety which develops and implements systems for public safety agencies around the world.