By Mike King, Emergency Call Taking and Dispatch Industry Manager • Esri Public Safety Team
In October 2016, Hurricane Matthew bore down on the southeastern USA. State and local communities suffered billions of dollars in damage and loss in the storm that prompted the President of the United States, Attorney General and many others to travel to the region to offer physical and moral support.
For several weeks, the city of Fayetteville, North Carolina, and communities nearby endured hurricane-influenced challenges that closed a large portion of Interstate 95 and caused massive flooding, requiring more than 80 water rescues in Fayetteville alone. The demand for help was so great that diving and water-rescue personnel from New York (who happened to be attending training in the region) were authorized to assist in the rescue efforts.
To effectively coordinate these rescue efforts and provide overall operational understanding, the City of Fayetteville relied on the Bradshaw Consulting Services PSAP Monitor solution, an informational geographic information system (GIS) mapping dashboard with visualization and analytic capabilities powered by the ArcGIS platform.
By providing agency-wide access to PSAP Monitor, including access to noncity departments providing support through mutual aid, field officers coordinated and communicated effectively with the command center. Flood zones, evacuation areas, roadblocks, and asset locations were disseminated to first responders via intelligent, interactive, and collaborative maps in mobile units and on iOS, Android, and Windows devices.
Chris Harvey, PSAP Monitor product manager, stated, “Fayetteville call centers and incident commanders quickly shared citizen requests for assistance by incorporating interactive maps with the calls coming into the communications center. These maps, along with PSAP Monitor's intrinsic analytic capabilities, were shared with first responders in real time.”
Fayetteville officers were able to share the real-time information with secret service and other VIP protection personnel who were responsible for the safety of President Barack Obama, Attorney General Loretta Lynch, Vice President hopeful Mike Pence and others through secure, web-based links to PSAP Monitor. This information was used to track motorcades and establish security perimeters as needed.
Esri congratulates the City of Fayetteville and our partner, Bradshaw Consulting Services, for creating a collaborative, intelligent way for first responders to more effectively serve the community during a crisis.