In-building Coverage / BDA

Public Safety Radio coverage inside buildings is now mandated in many of our local municipalities. Because buildings, especially ones with modern building materials, impede radio reception and transmission, in many cases, a location where radio coverage for Public Safety Responders is available outside the building, it is not the case inside the building. Of course, this presents a very real danger for everyone inside the building in the event of an emergency or crisis.

A Bi-Directional Amplifier (BDA) and a Distributed Antenna System (DAS) are the equipment needed to provide radio coverage inside a building. A “Donor” antenna, usually on the building’s roof, receives emergency radio transmissions outside the building. The signal is then fed to the BDA which amplifies the signal and then transmits it to the DAS inside the building. The transmissions from emergency responders’ handheld radio inside the building is likewise transmitted through the DAS and then amplified by the BDA and ultimately transmitted through the “donor” antenna and back the emergency dispatch radio site.

The International Fire Code Section 510 “Emergency Responder Radio Coverage” specifies all the compliance requirements. The requirements are for new buildings and is generally adopted by our local municipalities. However, in many cases, individual municipalities have amended their own fire codes to include existing buildings.

Building owners, and construction managers must obtain permits and comply with these regulations. The specialized equipment and the necessary custom design is not something that a general construction contractor or the traditional subcontractors will be able to provide. Action Communications has the experience and expertise design and install your BDA and DAS system.