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Emergency services’ radio replacement delays ‘could cost millions’

By DPF Admin25th January 2017August 6th, 2019Area Updates, Latest News, Northern Updates, Southern Updates

Delays in introducing a new radio system for emergency services in England, Wales and Scotland may cost taxpayers £475m a year, MPs have said.

The Public Accounts Committee said the new Emergency Services Network system could require more testing beyond its scheduled start date of December 2019.

Contracts for the old network may have to be extended, costing hundreds of millions of pounds, it said. Ministers said the technology would be the “most advanced of its kind”.

Currently the 105 police, fire and ambulance services in England, Scotland and Wales communicate using the radio network Airwave – contracts for which expire in two years.

But the Public Accounts Committee said the system due as the replacement, ESN, was “not yet proven” and probably would not be ready on time.

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