In 2000, the Federal Protective Service (FPS) transitioned all alarm-monitoring and dispatching capabilities from several regional control centers to four MegaCenters. Currently, each MegaCenter monitors multiple types of alarm systems, closed circuit television, and wireless dispatch communications within federal facilities throughout the nation. These centers—located in Michigan, Colorado, Pennsylvania, and Maryland—are equipped with state-of-the-art communication systems and are in operation 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
The centers are fully redundant—if there is a partial or catastrophic failure at one center, all operations can be remotely switched and monitored at a “peer” location without disruption to field service.
MegaCenter National Emergency Toll Free Number: 1-877-4FPS-411 (1-877-437-7411)
TTY/TDD (Telecommunications Device for the Deaf) MegaCenter Numbers by area:
- Suitland MegaCenter: 301-763-0126
- Battle Creek MegaCenter: 269-565-9616
- Philadelphia MegaCenter: 215-521-2225
- Denver MegaCenter: 877-437-7411
Vital Communications Link
While MegaCenters are an alarm-monitoring entity, they also serve as a unique and vital communications link between FPS law enforcement personnel on the street and contract security guards located at various facilities FPS protects. This vital communications link has been created as a result of the investment of millions of dollars to ensure effective communications and safety of FPS operations. The related alarm-monitoring function for General Services Administration (GSA) and other federally-owned and leased facilities provides a dedicated and specialized service to ensure prompt dispatch of law enforcement and emergency first responders to situations at those facilities nationwide. FPS MegaCenters are the 911 dispatch center for the Department.
Presently, FPS MegaCenters have a national wireless communication network that uses a voice-over internet-protocol system that transmits over a wide-area network. This form of communication reduces recurring long-line costs, ensures redundancy and is set up to provide fail-over capability in the event of a scheduled or unscheduled outage. Considering the success of the FPS national wireless radio communication system, FPS is working with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the Department to see if opportunities exist for FPS to extend this service to other Department of Homeland Security components.
FPS is currently working on several projects that range from access control/SmartCard management to rapid deployment capabilities in disaster situations. FPS is continually evaluating cutting edge technology that can enhance its capabilities to protect the nation.