In emergencies, an essential tool for first responders is their ability to communicate reliably. The quality of emergency communications for first responders has been a long-time concern of Bowling Green Fire Chief Bill Moorman. For years, there have been radio communication dead zones in and around Bowling Green, which could be problematic for many area agencies, especially in an emergency. Fortunately, Chief Moorman acted in 2019 and applied for State Capital Budget funding with the Toledo Chamber of Commerce. With the help of Senator Theresa Gavarone and Representative Haraz Ghanbari, $500,000 was awarded to the City of Bowling Green to install a Multi-Agency Radio Communication System (MARCS) Tower.
MARCS is the statewide reliable communication system that enables state, local, and federal agencies to communicate instantly with one another during public safety events. More than 2,300 Ohio public safety/public service agencies participate in MARCS, with over 300 MARCS towers. Unfortunately, there was a coverage gap that existed in Wood County, which initiated Chief Moorman’s mission to obtain State funding for this much-needed improvement
Today, Fire Code and Ohio Building Code require building owners to ensure first responder radio coverage in their facilities by employing a supplemental Emergency Responder Radio System (ERRS) if there is a radio coverage issue. Many area businesses were facing necessary improvements to comply with the current code, which would have cost millions of dollars. The MARCS tower ensures excellent radio coverage, saving local companies money by no longer needing to make these investments.
“This is a game-changer when it comes to communication in Wood County. This upgrade will make everyone safer, not just students and residents of Bowling Green but also the surrounding communities. It’s a win-win from a public safety and cost standpoint,” says Chief Moorman.
The 300-foot tower, located at the Bowling Green ODOT facility, provides secure, reliable wireless communication for public safety and first responders throughout Wood County. This was the site of a previous communication tower of similar size.
Agencies who will benefit from the MARCS tower:
- Bowling Green Fire Division
- Bowling Green Police Division
- Bowling Green State University Police Division
- Wood County Emergency Management
- State Fire Marshal’s office
- Ohio Highway Patrol
- Ohio Department of Transportation
- Ohio Department of Natural Resources
- Middleton Township Fire Department
- Central Joint Fire District
- Center Township Fire Division
- Weston Fire and EMS
- Washington Township Fire Department
Any Municipal, State or Federal Agency that Utilizes MARCS Radios