Motorola Solutions has been awarded a $75 million contract to design a radio system for first responders in St. Louis County.
The system will allow more than 150 police departments, fire departments, paramedics and other public safety agencies to communicate directly with each other by radio. Officials say their inability to do that makes it difficult to respond to disasters effectively.
The system will be one of the largest in the Midwest, with more than 9,000 vehicle-mounted and handheld radios. It's funded by a 1/10-cent sales tax that voters approved in 2009, which will also help fund a new emergency communications center and a new tornado warning siren system.