The Town of Wethersfield is spending $3.6 million to replace an old police radio system.
The system has been plagued with problems for years, jeopardizing the safety of town residents.
Friday the contract was finalized with Harris Corporation; however it will take some time to actually build a third tower and update their system.
Until everything is done, which could be a year away, the town will still have to deal with their current issues.
“Since the day it was constructed we’ve had coverage issues,” said Wethersfield Town Manager, Jeff Bridges.
“The main concern right now is that it already reached its end of life and end of support,” said Wethersfield Police Chief, James Cetran.
Chief Cetran calls is a game of Russian Roulette. He said at times the radio system will fail, so an officer trying to call for backup or give a location will be met with silence. It puts officers in grave danger.
“It’s a scary scenario but I feel confident we’ll be able to get up and running with the new system sooner than later,” said Cetran.
Town Manager Jeff Bridges is overseeing the contract negotiation with Harris Corporation.
“This one should have longevity to it and actually the contracts were designed to have longevity to it,” he said.
The new system will bring in a third tower and will have ongoing maintenance for 15 years. The current system works on two towers and does not have the same kind of maintenance.
However, it takes time to get everything up and running, meaning officers, firefighters and town personnel will still have to rely on their spotty service.
“It’s not the best scenario but it’s probably a pretty good situation for the circumstances that we’re in right now,” said Cetran.