The Tániaste and Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform, Michael McDowell, T.D., today announced that Tetra Ireland Ltd have been selected as the preferred bidder for the provision of the National Digital Radio Service and are currently working with An Garda Síochána and other Departments and Agencies on the rollout of the service which will be delivered in two phases:

- A service performance evaluation in an area covering parts of Dublin including the Port and Airport and north into Co. Meath.
- Nationwide rollout

In a function in Balbriggan Garda Station at which the new technology was demonstrated, the Tánaiste said "The Government has been consistently committed to ensuring that An Garda Síochána will receive every possible support to enable them to operate effectively as a modern police force including the provision of information and communications technology to place them on a par with the best equipped police forces in the world. Today marks another significant landmark in delivering on that promise.

The provision of this service is of major importance to An Garda Síochána in their fight against crime. It will provide a secure communications service which is effective, resilient and reliable by ensuring there is no single point of failure in the system. The service will also open up opportunities for new and improved service delivery models by An Garda Síochána themselves such as the opportunity to rationalise Radio Control Rooms into a small number of dedicated specialist and dedicated centres."

Tetra Ireland is a company formed for the delivery of the National Digital Radio services and comprises of a consortium of:

- Eircom
- Motorola
- Sigma Wireless

The first performance evaluation phase involves the provision of a live working system during which Tetra Ireland will demonstrate that they can provide a working solution to meet the detailed specifications and standards required of an emergency services network. This first phase will be completed by July this year.

Subject to the satisfactory completion of Phase 1, and successful contract negotiations, nationwide rollout will then commence and be completed within a 2 year timeframe. As the rollout progresses and radio coverage is available, Garda Divisions will be migrating onto the new service.

The new National Digital Radio Service offers a broad range of services and advantages over existing analogue systems to the force including;

26 March 2007