Harris County Sheriff’s Office Mobile Emergency Response Center (MERC)
Harris County Sheriff’s Office Mobile Emergency Response Center (MERC) Gary
Harris County Sheriff’s Office in Houston, Texas is one of the largest Sheriff Departments in the country and in addition to being responsible for providing protection for such a large population, it also is located in “Hurricane Alley” along the Gulf Coast. Harris County has established a complete fleet of Mobile Command Center and Emergency Response vehicles and trailers. As a part of their fleet build out, Harris County was one of the first government agencies in the country to build a complete mobile 911 dispatch center which allows them to continue to take 911 calls utilizing a satellite network even if they lose their 911 base center.
The latest addition to their fleet of emergency response units is a 35-foot gooseneck style Mobile Emergency Response Center (MERC) trailer. This MERC trailer was part of a unique package that combined the MERC trailer with an inflatable shelter that could be set up adjacent to the MERC to provide climate controlled workspace for up to 50 dispatch operators and First Responders. This innovative collection of equipment allows Harris County and it’s neighboring counties to have a “shared asset” that could be deployed anywhere it was needed for a Disaster Response providing a self-sufficient combination of power, communication equipment, and climate controlled office space.
This MERC package combined with the shelter provides us a response package that can be fully deployed in less than 30 minutes anywhere we need it!
SGT John Byrd, Harris County Sheriff’s Emergency Response Team
The MERC is equipped with a 70,000 wattdiesel generator that provides power for the trailer itself, all the comm gear, four 5-ton AC/Heating Units, and the internal LED lighting for the shelter. The MERC trailer houses and transports the shelter along with the 25 work tables, 50 folding chairs, AC units, LED lights, and communication equipment. A General Dynamics 1.2 meter auto acquire satellite dish provides the network connection which feeds a Cisco communication package that provides Hosted VoIP service and internet access.