NextGen 911 being rolled out in Omaha

The new service is designed to update the infrastructure of the 911 system in the U.S. and Canada.
The 911 system is getting an upgrade
Published: Dec. 13, 2022 at 5:19 PM CST|Updated: Dec. 13, 2022 at 5:20 PM CST
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - A faster 911 system is in the works in the metro.

The first part of NextGen 911 is aimed at replacing the infrastructure that allows 911 call centers to function.

Douglas County officials say it will be implemented in phases.

“It’s like having just a landline at your house -- it still relies on copper cables somewhere that allow the phone call to come across in a traditional manner,” said Kyle Kramer, Douglas County’s technical manager. “The first portion of that is changing that to where the call delivery, instead of coming over a phone line, will actually happen over an IP network.”

That will allow 911 operators to take advantage of technology we all use now on our mobile devices.

“Eventually, you may be able to use other technologies that will be equivalent to any kind of FaceTime-type applications, to where you might actually be able to allow the call-taker to see what’s going on in your surroundings,” Kramer said.

That information can then be passed on to first responders in the field and will allow them to assess the situation to determine what type of tools or the number of emergency personnel needed at a scene.

State officials say they hope to have the metro, including Pottawattamie County, connected to the system by the first of the year. Douglas County is in the process of testing. If all goes well with testing across the state, Nebraska should be fully connected in the next six months.