New Jersey Public Safety DAS
Emergency Responder Radio Communications Systems (ERRCS)
In 2009, the State of NJ adopted a code requiring in building radio coverage for First Responders. These systems are often referred to as Public Safety DAS, ERRCS (Emergency Responder Radio Communications Systems), or ERCES (Emergency Responder Communications Enhancement Systems). Any new high rise or large construction project (over 50,000 square feet, or smaller with basements) is required by the state to either prove reliable radio coverage inside their building through a grid test, and report or provide in-building radio enhancement to assure proper communication. Buildings being retrofitted to meet energy efficient requirements have to prove coverage as well. These upgrades often negatively impact radio performance, especially when Low E glass is installed. The specifications of these systems vary from municipality to municipality, which is why engaging an expert in radio service and system design is critical. Some municipalities in New Jersey have requirements for existing buildings to upgrade by adding a public safety DAS or signal booster system, if public safety radio signal coverage does not meet required signal strength or audio quality. Please understand that in-building New Jersey public safety radio coverage requirements can vary greatly based on the Authority Having Jurisdiction (AHJ). An AHJ requires systems to accommodate multiple agencies throughout your region.
According to the 2015 New Jersey and New York International Fire Code (IFC), section 510, “All new buildings shall have approved radio coverage for emergency responders within the building, based upon the existing coverage levels of the public safety communication systems of the jurisdiction at the exterior of the building…” Additionally, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 72 Section 24.5.2 (2013 Edition) dictates that radio coverage shall be provided with 99 percent floor area coverage in critical areas and 90 percent floor area radio coverage in general building areas.
WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR YOU?
If you own a building constructed after Sept. 21, 2015 in New Jersey the Authority Having Jurisdiction (AHJ), such as the Fire Sub-Code Official, shall require you to survey, and if required, install an Emergency Responder Radio Communication Systems (ERRCS) / Bi-Directional Amplifier (BDA) in your building. Building owners are responsible for hiring a certified company experienced and trained to ensure the survey, system design, and installation meet code. We at PMC are certified in DAS installation and design through the nationally recognized certification agency ETA, and we also hold FCC licenses to operate radios on public safety systems.
ENGAGE US EARLY
PMC can perform upfront testing early in, or prior to, construction. This will give you a baseline of the radio signal strength in your area, so initial recommendations can be made. Provide us with CAD drawings so your construction can be evaluated, and if needed, a system can be planned during your build, rather than as an afterthought, which causes unnecessary, increased costs if performed after finish work has been completed in your building.
PMC Wireless has been serving New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania for over 30 years, our goal is to provide you with the best solution for your communication needs, and to assure compliance with all local regulations to avoid delays and negative cost impacts to your property.