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THOR: The Next Generation of 9-1-1

THOR: The Next Generation of 9-1-1

The first truck of its kind, THOR is meant to be the Swiss Army knife of emergency preparedness vehicles. It'll roll out to an undisclosed location to coordinate police efforts during the Super Bowl.

Dallas Morning News via YellowBrix

November 23, 2010

DALLAS – Dallas police are getting a super-size security assist for the Super Bowl.

THOR is two stories high, weighs 80,000 pounds and measures 80 feet in length when fully expanded.

A multimillion-dollar, oversized, sleek, shiny black tractor trailer with emergency lights, sirens, surveillance cameras and 911 communications capabilities is being lent to the Police Department free for about 10 days around the big event.

THOR – Tactical Homeland Operational Response – is two stories high, weighs 80,000 pounds and measures 80 feet in length when fully expanded.

“This is essentially a public safety center on wheels,” said Michael Lee, vice president of the emergency responder division of Intrado, a Colorado-based emergency communications company.

Super Bowl XLV, to be played Feb. 6 at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, is the first scheduled event for which the rolling command post will be used, he said. The truck was on display for media and police Monday at Jack Evans Police Headquarters.

The inside is decked out with 911 communications consoles, flat screens and a second-floor conference room. Monday morning, one screen was tuned to CNN while the screen next to it displayed an image from a surveillance camera trained on the back of the police headquarters building.

Photos or video of the inside of the truck were forbidden, and police officials said they had yet to determine exactly how or where they would use the command center. Official Super Bowl XLV events are planned throughout North Texas.

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“We’re real excited about having a resource that’s available to us to help keep the community safe during Super Bowl events,” said Lt. Chris Aulbaugh.

Completed in April, the truck is designed largely for 911 services and communications coordination among various public safety agencies and can hold about 25 people. It won’t be used for 911 services during the Super Bowl, but Dallas police will probably use it to help coordinate communications with other area agencies.

In the future, Intrado officials envision THOR traveling the country and being used for major planned events or responses to natural disasters, Lee said.

“This is part of the next generation of 9-1-1.”


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