|Sepura TETRA sets free the Brazilian favelas from drug trafficking and supports rescue operations demanded due to natural disaster|
Public safety users in Brazil have enjoyed the benefits of Sepura radios and TETRA technology since they were deployed for the Pan-American Games held in Rio de Janeiro in 2007. The continuing contribution of Sepura's robust radios to maintaining a secure and safe environment around Rio is illustrated by the important part they played as Rio's public safety organisations successfully addressed two recent high-profile emergencies.
Incursion of the favelas' major cluster, Complexo do Alemão
In November 2010, Rio de Janeiro was the scene of highly dramatic events, when drug dealers, based in the favelas, caused acts of extreme violence in the city. In an operation that will be recorded in the city's history, Brazilian security forces were able to react efficiently and effectively by bringing together several civilian and military teams into one integrated force. They entered and occupied the favelas, freeing them from the long-term control of drug traffickers.
All agents involved were able to communicate with each other thanks to Sepura TETRA radio terminals. Inter-agency communication between the Military and Civilian Police, Civil Defense (Detel), Fire, Navy and Army was crucial to the success of the operation and enabled commanders to synchronise the actions of their field agents from their control rooms. Colonel Marcos Peniche, Head of Engineering for Detel said: "Sepura radios were absolutely crucial for the success of this operation. Being able to monitor all the critical actions - down to the second - allowed us to focus our resources, to manage the events in record time and, most importantly, to preserve human life."
Indeed, Detel agents, led by Colonel Peniche, achieved their first victory when, in the middle of a gun fight, they climbed to the Igreja da Penha, a church on a hill at the heart of the events, to install a TETRA base station - something that had never been authorised before by the local priest. This base station provided extended coverage of the communications network right at the core of the Complexo do Alemão.
Coronel Peniche added: "It was highly important to have TETRA technology to support these
critical communications and Sepura terminals to catalyse the operations. Thanks to their small size, light weight and user-friendly interface, the Sepura terminals enabled operatives, who had never used TETRA radios before, to rapidly and effectively acquire the skills to communicate and coordinate actions with their peers and officers.
"...Sepura terminals are without doubt the number one option for public safety operatives..."
Floods in the Região Serrana
In January this year, the mountainous region north of Rio, comprising the cities of Friburgo, Teresópolis and Petrópolis, saw the worst floods ever experienced in the region. This natural disaster demanded the urgent intervention of Civil Defence teams for search and rescue operations.
Once again, Sepura radios were pivotal to a critical mission - enabling emergency teams to act promptly and coordinate effectively in support of the region's inhabitants. Colonel Marcos Peniche explains: "We sent a base station and Sepura terminals to provide communications for all the Civil Defence teams. Sepura terminals provided incredible support to the rescue teams in severe and extreme weather conditions. In such critical circumstances a terminal is not just a simple radio, but an essential tool in helping to save human lives."
Vitor Rodrigues, Sepura Business Development Manager for the region concluded: "These two events clearly demonstrate that, firstly, for successfully managing emergency situations, the choice of TETRA was the right one; and secondly, the reason why Sepura terminals are without doubt the number one option for public safety operatives around the world is that they were designed to help users overcome the demanding environments of events like these."