Breaking down public safety silos, geographic barriers
Seamlessly share data between public safety agencies and mutual aid partners with enterprise information management
By Robert Avsec
Public safety silos likely exist in your community. And with these silos comes the aggregation of data. In the world of public safety, this includes inspection, surveillance, and response time data from dispatch to fire, EMS, and law enforcement computer aided dispatch (CAD) systems.
Global information management systems can truly bring down those silos and ensure that information is free flowing.
Here are just a three scenarios in which enterprise information management CAD solutions enable seamless data sharing.
1. Instant data sharing across jurisdictions
Imagine a mass shooting event occurs in your community. The perpetrator has fled the scene, but law enforcement officers have a basic physical description, and a vehicle type and color. They send that information to your dispatch center and their fellow officers in the department via their wireless devices.
With a couple of mouse clicks, the dispatcher distributes that information to every law enforcement officer in your jurisdiction, as well as every other dispatch center in the region, where other dispatchers direct it to their law enforcement officers.
Without phone calls, teletypes or old school techniques, a be-on-the-lookout (BOLO) is instantly dispatched across neighboring communities. But that’s not all. That BOLO is popping up on every wireless device in local fire departments and EMS agencies. Every element of the public safety team is on the lookout.
2. On scene notification of fire pre-plans, Hazmat alerts
Here’s another example. All your fire department’s resources are committed to a major fire. Mutual aid resources have come in to backfill your stations. Suddenly, your dispatch center receives a 911 call from a local manufacturing facility and directs some of those mutual aid resources to the call.
And as they are responding, your dispatcher is clicking away, sending the responding units’ on-board computers and wireless devices pre-fire plan information, the SARA Title III report (with the types and quantities of stored reportable hazardous materials on site) and emergency contact information for the company’s management staff.
3. Text-to-talk functionality makes documentation a breeze
The days of demobilizing from a major incident and later finding out that much of the “who, what, when, why and how” information for the incident hasn’t been adequately documented are over. There’s no need for dispatchers back in the dispatch center to enter written notes into the call record, or for incident commanders and their staff to jot down written notes or manually enter data into incident command software applications.
Through talk-to-text functionality, all your radio communications can be automatically converted to text in real time. With some minor editing, your department would have the necessary data to complete an after-action review for any incident, no matter how many agencies responded. Think of the time saved in chasing down information.
Those mutual aid fire companies that responded to the hazmat call? All your dispatch center’s communication with them gets documented and they can share it back to the dispatch in the communities where those resources came from.