WDAY: The News Leader

Published January 27, 2010, 08:46 AM

ND Highway troopers train with Computer Aided Dispatch system

North Dakota Highway Patrol troopers are getting an upgrade. They are getting a new system that will make a huge difference, not only in public safety, but trooper safety as well.

“This is basically the first step to providing for state-wide information exchange in regards to public safety.”

The idea is to make troopers more efficient in their daily duties. The CAD system, Computer Aided Dispatch, stores massive amounts of information. It keeps records of driver's license information, plate numbers and registration.

“So if you have somebody that's stopped a lot, you're going to get all that information back before you even approach the car.”

But this system has something special, a GPS application. It allows troopers to see a map of the state with small dots; each one represents a highway patrol car.

“This way they can see exactly where they are, they can start working toward a stop, if you know, they think somebody might need assistance.”

This means less time figuring out where troopers are, or who needs to be sent to a certain location.

“Just easier exchange of information, officer safety will be better, because people will be able to see what everyone else is doing.”

After today's training, troopers will have the CAD system software installed on their laptops inside their squad cars. That way they'll be able to practice with it and be ready for when the system officially starts in March. Training will continue tomorrow out in Valley City for troopers from Valley City and Jamestown.