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2017 Public Safety Communications Conference

​Minnesota's 8th annual Public Safety Interoperable Communications Conference scheduled for May 1 - 3, 2017 and will be held at the St. Cloud River's Edge Convention Center.  Register at

FirstNet announces partnership with AT&T

​In a historic announcement, FirstNet has taken the next major step in providing a nationwide public safety broadband network (NPSBN). FirstNet will partner with AT&T for the next 25 years as they work to build and maintain the much anticipated system. With AT&T as the partner, FirstNet will begin work on a timeline for the network buildout. This includes kickoff meetings as well as development of State Plans, which will identify the tools and resources offered through FirstNet. Governor Dayton will use the Minnesota State Plan proposed by FirstNet to consider the state’s participation in the dedicated wireless broadband network.

Watch why this partnership is being called a promise fulfilled to the public safety community.


Own an iPhone? Why you won’t want to say the numbers 108 to Siri

Siri screenshot

There’s a new prank circulating across social media and this one may have a negative impact on Minnesota 911 dispatch centers. Posts are encouraging people to say the numbers 1-0-8 to Siri. But doing so will call 9-1-1.

The prank has hit Minnesota with a confirmed case in Blue Earth County.  108 is the emergency number in India, but on Apple devices, it will translate it to 911 in the United States. This is a dangerous prank that could potentially and quickly overwhelm a 911 center, especially a small one, preventing legitimate calls from getting through.

This news story from North Carolina explains how the prank works.

IPAWS celebrates milestone

Lillian McDonald awarded for work on IPAWS

Minnesota’s public alert system, known as IPAWS (Integrated Public Alert and Warning System), recently reached a five year milestone. The Statewide Emergency Communications Board committee, tasked with establishing policies, procedures and protocols for IPAWS, honored five of the founding members this month. IPAWS can be used by local and state authorities to send warnings and alerts to the public about safety threats, including:
  • AMBER Alerts
  • Civil dangers and emergencies
  • Evacuations and shelter notices
  • Hazardous materials incidents
IPAWS messages can be delivered in a variety of ways, including through the Emergency Alert System (EAS) on radio and TV stations and via cell phone using Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA). Sixty-two of Minnesota’s 87 counties have the capability to send an IPAWS message.