Old Vehicle Provides New Capabilities

Mobile Communications Center

The recently renovated Mobile Communication Center (MCC) provides communication support for both the Red Cross First Aid Service and Disaster Action Teams. Before it became the MCC the vehicle was owned by the state of Ohio, and was merely an empty shell when the state gave the keys to the Red Cross. Fast forward a few years and we have the MCC.

The vehicle is equipped with a built-in tower for radio connections and a camera on top that spans 360 degrees, great for recording and surveillance. “Creating a system that can be quickly deployed [with] real-time communication and a team to run it should improve the time and efficiency of response to an emergency,” says Michael Clark, Red Cross volunteer.

You may have seen the MCC near Ohio Stadium during Ohio State football games or at the Columbus Marathon. Although the vehicle hasn’t responded to a fire yet, it will be sent out when fire has struck five or more units or when two or more Disaster Action Teams are called to a disaster scene.

This project was funded through in- kind donations from Home Depot and members of the Response Technology (RT) Team. The teams’16 members spent hundreds of hours revamping the vehicle and invested money every which way.

“It’s becoming more operational and a bigger asset to our disaster response everyday,” says Jeff McElroy, American Red Cross of Greater Columbus Readiness Manager.

Thanks to Jeri Moore, C&M Intern, for this post.

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