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Last month — more than a decade after 9/11 — federal lawmakers set aside a portion of the wireless spectrum exclusively for first responders, ensuring they won’t be left in the dark if commercial networks shut down during a crisis.

And though it won’t be running nationwide for a year, Tampa plans to roll out a pilot program in July — just in time for the RNC.

Law enforcement agencies in town will be able to use their smartphones to stream video and send data to each other in real time. And their communication won’t be affected by other traffic, said Pam Montanari, a regional communications leader who’s driving the pilot program.

Source: Jessica Vander Velde for Tampa Bay Times.

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