State agency collecting address data

NASHUA – State officials may be seen cruising around the city collecting address information to have an accurate geographic representation of the community in an effort to ensure the most efficient and timely emergency response service, including Nashua.

The New Hampshire Division of Emergency Services and Communications is in the process of collecting data to provide updated information on all roads and structures. This is why the DESC wants Nashua residents to be aware of this process. When New Hampshire residents and visitors call 911, DESC’s goal is to provide them with immediate emergency assistance. They believe collecting this information will help them do that.

“We are looking to collect 30,000 to 35,000 addresses in this project,” DESC IT Manager Matt White said on behalf on the information being collected in Nashua.

White said crews began collecting data on March 4. He said representatives drive around and identify points for GPS. He said any point that emergency responders can get to is a location they are trying to collect.

Division representatives out collecting information are driving white sport utility vehicles that are clearly marked with a state seal logo, and an amber light on the roof. However, personnel may also collect this information by walking the streets in order to properly map the entrances and unit designations for multi-unit buildings.

Representatives should also be easy to spot, as they will be displaying state of New Hampshire badges featuring their names and titles. They will also be wearing fluorescent vests identifying them, while they will have business cards featuring DESC mapping unit contact information.

“Currently, we have two field crews and each field crew has two people,” White said.

He said while one crew member is driving, the passenger is adding in the address points into a computer.

All address information collected will be sent to the DESC main office in Concord for processing. Later, the city will receive an updated set of maps and digital data. DESC estimates it will take up to seven months to complete the data collection, especially since there are urban areas to cover.

Field representatives will talk to liaisons from towns and cities to review and make sure everything adds up correctly for approval. He said this is done because there are times when discrepancies arise from what city officials believe they have, compared to what was actually found out in the field.

White said the process began in the more remote, underserved areas of the state.

“It has been a 15-year project to visit every address, and every road in the state,” White said.

Additionally, anytime a town or city implements a new roadway or address, a crew moves to collect information on it. He said throughout the state, there are 654,000 addresses collected. After work is complete in Nashua, White said the only cities left in which to collect information will be Concord and Portsmouth.

Adam Urquhart may be contacted at 594-1206, or at aurquhart@nashuatelegraph.com.

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