Technology Gives Officers Priority Use of Cellular Network in Emergencies

Rockville police officers are now better able to maintain communication in emergency situations with the help of new cellphones issued last month.

“These services give Rockville police officers a reliable way to communicate by phone with other public safety personnel during critical emergencies,” Chief Victor Brito said.

The iPhone 7 phones, with service by Verizon Wireless, integrate with the body-worn cameras issued to all officers last year and allow officers to attach case numbers and other notes to recorded video, making it easier to reference the footage.

The iPhones were issued to each of the Rockville City Police Department’s sworn officers, including Chief Victor Brito. The technology also allows Verizon to prioritize communication for first responders during an emergency, such as a storm or large-scale public safety emergency.

The department maintains a strict policy about how officers can use the phones, including what type of content they can download to the device. The policy can be found at www.rockvillemd.gov/1962/General-Orders.