NEWCOM Emergency Communications which provides 9-1-1 services for seventeen municipalities in northern Allegheny County is located in the Township of Shaler Police Department building. NEWCOM serves fifteen area police departments, thirty-eight fire companies, and nine Emergency Medical Service (EMS) agencies. The geographical area for the NEWCOM region has a population of approximately 186,000 residents.
NEWCOM answers 9-1-1 emergency calls for the following 17 municipalities: Aspinwall, Blawnox, Bradford Woods, Etna, Fox Chapel, Hampton, Indiana, Marshall, Millvale, O'Hara, Pine, Reserve, Richland, Ross, Shaler, Sharpsburg, and West Deer. Approximately 325,000 telephone calls a year are answered by the dispatchers with 18-20% of these being actual 9-1-1 calls.
NEWCOM employs twenty-three full-time and six part-time staff. A Board of Delegates governs the overall operations of the NEWCOM Emergency Communications while an Administrative Committee oversees the day-to-day operations. Both the Board of Delegates and the Administrative Committee meet on a quarterly basis.
Installation of a new, $5.3 million, five-site communications system was completed in 1998 by Motorola Radio System. This system enables public-safety agencies serving the area's 186,000 residents to communicate with each other for the first time over a shared system infrastructure. Motorola designed, manufactured, and installed the entire radio and paging systems including the microwave background that eliminates the need to connect the system's five sites by telephone lines. Motorola also provided the system's software.
System users can communicate with many other nearby agencies through the dispatch center. Some of the compatible radio systems operating in NEWCOM's coverage area include those operated by several Allegheny County agencies, the Pennsylvania State Police, and a number of local municipalities.