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Road Warriors

NCJ Number
Law Enforcement Technology Volume: 34 Issue: 3 Dated: March 2007 Pages: 50,52,60
Jennifer Mertens
Date Published
March 2007
10 pages
This article describes the features and uses of the police mobile command centers of Purdue University (Indiana), the Rockville Police Department (Maryland), and the Massachusetts State Police (MSP).
Purdue's mobile command center is a 32-foot trailer that can be pulled by a number of vehicles in the university's fleet. The trailer houses portable communications equipment, a restroom, kitchenette, a conference table, and ample storage space. Six to eight people can function comfortably in the trailer. The command trailer has been taken to sites for missing person searches and to university football games to be used as a control center and rest area for emergency personnel. Rockville, MD, has a 24-foot motorcoach mobile communications center. Because of its limited size, a special operator's license is not required, so any officer can drive it. The Rockville Police Department patrols approximately 20 special events a year; the mobile unit is used for more than half of them. It can be staffed with an additional dispatcher and operate all special events on a separate channel. At special events, a representative of the fire/rescue service is usually stationed in the command center, as well as the city's public works and parks-and-recreation staff. Other uses for the vehicle are for truck inspections, the child-fingerprinting program, and as transportation for the police honor guard. The MSP's mobile command center is a 53-foot trailer outfitted with state-of-the-art communications capabilities and 15 workstations. A 20-foot light tower has surveillance capabilities. A conference table is large enough for 12 people. The MSP mobile command center is used at the Boston Marathon, parades, athletic events, and other special events.