Cell towers helping first responders; providing better service for communication

REHOBOTH BEACH, Del. – “This new infrastructure helps us out.”

New cell phone towers in Rehoboth Beach are giving a leg up to first responders.

Over a year ago, cell phone company AT&T erected five towers to improve service for users in the area.

Now, we’re told cell service in the area has never been faster, making reaction time for fire fighters much quicker.

Kent Swarts is the Public Information Officer for the Rehoboth Beach Volunteer Fire Department.

He said, “It gives us priority and preemption on that cellular network.”

City Manager Sharon Lynn said, “We have over 50 thousand visitors on any given day during the course of the summer.”

Before the towers were introduced up and down the streets of the popular resort town, every person with a smart phone was sharing the same few towers for cell service.

Thus, making it extremely difficult for first responders to do their job.

Swarts said, “We would get kicked off. We just didn’t have the reliability that we need.”

Now, the fire department tells 47 ABC when they need to respond to a call or receive important information, “it provides a highly reliable always on platform for communications,” said Swarts.

While communication has drastically improved with the new towers, the town and fire department agree there is always room for improvement.

They tell us the town is now considering adding two more towers.

Lynn said, “It will hopefully give us a boost, not only the police department, the Fire Department and everyone that works here.”

The city of Rehoboth Beach says they are still drafting an ordinance of when those two proposed towers will be constructed.

The city manager tells us when they do get official approval, they won’t start building until after the summer of 2019.

Categories: Delaware, Local News