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  • Recommendations for new CAD software.

    I am a Lieutenant in the Communications division of our department. Our department is beginning the process of upgrading our CAD system (we are currently using Tiburon). We have so far recieved presentations from TriTech, Integraph, InterAct and New World Systems to name a few. What CAD software does your department utilize and why? Which would you recommend? Any input you could provide would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks,

    Lt. Candelaria
    EPFD

  • #2
    All I can say is DON"T GO WITH INTERGRAPH!!! Nothing but problems. 3 years now and it's still not working like it should.
    A Fire Chief has ONLY 1 JOB and that's to take care of his fireman. EVERYTHING else falls under this.

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    • #3
      JTFIRE80,

      Could you please email me with details? Right now Integraph is the frontrunner and your post has just raised alot of eyebrows. My Chief would like all the info you might be able to provide. Thanks.
      My email address is [email protected].

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      • #4
        Ruben your going to run into that with every CAD system you ask about. I was at a conference sitting at a table with 8 people. All used HTE, half the table loved it, the other half hated it. All at different agencies. There is no rhyme or reason to it. When you look at the proposals that come in from each company you need to see which one will best suit your agency.

        I've heard great things about New World, but I've also heard horror stories.

        Out of the ones you listed, I've never heard of Tri-Tech.
        Someone once told me that time is a predator that stalks us all our lives. But maybe time is also a companion who goes with us on our journey, and reminds us to cherish the moments of our lives because they will never come again.

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        • #5
          I'd agree that you're going to run into problems with any CAD system you use. We've been using VisionAir CAD for about 6 years, and have had good success with it, and have had problems. What we have found to be most important is how the provider is to work with to fix problems and take suggestions.

          VisionAir has an active users group (they're meeting next week, and one of our supervisors is going) that includes users from all over the country. They bring up a wide variety of issues and work hard to improve the system for as many users as possible.

          Our FDs haven't used it yet, but they will be coming on board soon. We can expect to run into some problems, and some issues, especially with the use of engines, quints and rescue units, and how we use 1 quint + 1 rescue to equal 1 engine for certain calls.

          As I said, the most important thing is to find a CAD provider that has a reputation for working with the users to develop and maintain the best possible system.

          Good luck!
          Joe O'Keefe

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          • #6
            We had Intergraph and went to a local vendor out of East Haven / Branford CT call NEXGEN. It sucks and we never should have left Intergraph. Intergragh was helpful with their on-site staff and was always making changes for the needs of the department.

            I wish we went back to them...or never left.

            BTW...this was a Police Department

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            • #7
              My agency went from 3 different CAD systems (CAVIS, Intergraph I/CAD, and Logisys FirstCall) to a combined tri-services deployment of Intergraph I/CAD. You will get 20 opinions if you ask 20 people here. I personally love it. I find most of the people who hate it or, should I say, dislike it, feel this way because they're reluctant to change or unaware of how to reproduce the behavior/performance they're used to from the old system, via the new system. And, with all due respect to people who give Intergraph a hard time, I think the same problem applies there. I believe Intergraph to be far more powerful and user-friendly and configurable than any CAD system I've worked with.
              --jay.

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              • #8
                We Currently use Aegis by New World. Meets our needs and are looking to expand it's use to include some neighbors. I am also familiar with Emergitech, CMI, Geac and Spillman. Out of those, I believe that New World, Geac, and Spillman are all good, flexible products with excellant customer service. I can not say as much for CMI and Emergitech.

                As pointed out earlier, if they meet your needs.... I would put together a scoring system based on your needs so you can rate them, That usually helps to make a more objective decision.

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                • #9
                  Are you lookin for just CAD or a GIS solution? I would recommend looking at ESRI.com. I have used the ArcGIS program a lot and it is very powerful in what you can do and pretty easy to use. You can export files created to a free viewer ArcExplorer. No, I do not work for them or sell the product, I have just had great experiences using the product.

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                  • #10
                    The City of Sand Springs and Keystone Volunteer Fire Department are dispatched by the same center and they have used Cushing Technologies CAD system for a couple of years and it is great. As a former dispatcher it was easy to use and it interfaces with Firehouse software and station alerting systems. They are very inexpensive and WONDERFUL people to work with.

                    www.cushingtechnologies.com
                    Brian Cook
                    Asst. Chief

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                    • #11
                      You should also at least look at IMC-Information Management Corp. out of MA. www.IMCUS.com

                      I have been using them for over 10 years at 3 different departments and have always had goood luck with them. It can be a little buggy sometimes, but as long as your CAD administrator is knowledgeable and not afraid to call for help when needed the system works great and is very adaptable.
                      Jon
                      FF/EMT
                      Communications Trainer
                      IACOJ

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                      • #12
                        InterAct

                        I am the Communications Supervisor for our municipality and we have had InterAct since 2004. It is a great system and majorly operator friendly. We have had a wonderful experience with it and they upgrade you periodically to give you the latest versions out there.

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                        • #13
                          We switched from a legacy CAD system to OSSI in August of 2003. Overall, I like it. We use it for fire, EMS, and law enforcement to manage our two county area that covers almost 2000 square miles. Volume is @75,000 calls annually.

                          I don't have another Winodws based system to compare it to, but as a former systems analyst, I will say that it is impressively stable on our Windows 2000 platform.

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                          • #14
                            CAD Systems that WORK

                            I know several departments that use the integrated CAD system from Information Management Corporation (IMC) out of Grafton, Massachusetts (www.imcus.com). The best part of their CAD system is the automatic backfill into the NFIRS report...it's really slick.

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                            • #15
                              It is true that you find people that love or hate their respective CAD systems. It is human nature. My department uses a system called SLUETH. Everyone here (except the Supervisor who selected it, of course) hates it. Why? Programming problems like they cannot integrate WordWrap into the narrative sections of the call entries. Also, in our Master Name list of businesses, one day a business may be listed for call entry, then the next day it is missing. Very frustrating. There is also no mapping feature.

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