Gov. Haley Barbour says Mississippi's new wireless communication system is "going to save lives and protect property" during emergencies.
Barbour tested the $160 million system this weekend, speaking with emergency contacts across south Mississippi in less than one minute.
The new system comes four years after Hurricane Katrina devastated the coast and cut communication between officials and first responders.
The system is going up in phases. Phase one covers the lower third of the state and includes 44 tower sites. The second phase will place 52 towers in central Mississippi, and the third phase will include 47 in the northern portions of the state.