The Department of Public Safety has a new tool to handle emergency situations and large events.
DPS unveiled its new, 38-foot command vehicle, Wednesday.
It is fully loaded with the latest and greatest technology – satellite, 4G, broadband wireless networking, and video conferencing – and will replace two vans that were previously used for that type of response.
"It brings in a wide array of technology and functionality that we didn’t have with the two other vans," said Chief of Public Safety Communications Tim Baughman. "The technology that has come with this (vehicle) is phenomenal."
The two older vans will now be used for fire and mass casualty response.
But, Baughman says its main purpose is to serve as coordination center during incidents and events.
"It basically becomes an office to run a command post," he said. "Without evening using the advanced technology, it's a spot to call home when you have a command post rather than trying to run it from a car or from a sidewalk or something. But, to have a fixed post to do that is definitely an advantage."
The $500,000 command vehicle was paid for through grant money and Indianapolis Homeland Security Chief Gary Coons says it will provide an added layer of safety for the city.
"It will be used during any large scale event that we have. But, then you look at explosions, tornados, if we had major protests downtown, that way we can handle the scene but be close enough to see what's going on," said Coons.
The vehicle will operate for the first time Friday during the Circle of Lights, downtown.