City of Columbus 911 Call Center - Emergency Management Functionality

Subsystem Description

The Emergency Management (EM) Subsystem represents public safety, emergency management, and other allied agency systems that support incident management, disaster response and evacuation, security monitoring, and other security and public safety-oriented ITS applications. The subsystem includes the functions associated with fixed and mobile public safety communications centers including public safety call taker and dispatch centers operated by police (including transit police), fire, and emergency medical services. It includes the functions associated with Emergency Operations Centers that are activated at local, regional, state, and federal levels for emergencies and the portable and transportable systems that support Incident Command System operations at an incident. This subsystem also represents other allied systems including centers associated with towing and recovery, freeway service patrols, HAZMAT response teams, and mayday service providers.  

The subsystem manages sensor and surveillance equipment used to enhance transportation security of the roadway infrastructure (including bridges, tunnels, interchanges, and other key roadway segments) and the public transportation system (including transit vehicles, public areas such as transit stops and stations, facilities such as transit yards, and transit infrastructure such as rail, bridges, tunnels, or bus guideways). The subsystem provides security/surveillance services to improve traveler security in public areas not a part of the public transportation system.  

This subsystem monitors alerts, advisories, and other threat information and prepares for and responds to identified emergencies. It interfaces with other Emergency Management Subsystems to support coordinated emergency response involving multiple agencies. The subsystem stores, coordinates, and utilizes emergency response and evacuation plans to facilitate this coordinated response. As the response progresses, situation information including damage assessments, response status, evacuation information, and resource information are shared to keep all allied agencies appraised of the response. Interface with the Transit Management Subsystem allows coordinated use of transit vehicles to facilitate response to major emergencies and to support evacuation efforts. The Emergency Management Subsystem also provides a focal point for coordination of the emergency and evacuation information that is provided to the traveling public, including wide-area alerts when immediate public notification is warranted.  

The subsystem tracks and manages emergency vehicle fleets using real-time road network status and routing information from the other center subsystems to aide in selecting the emergency vehicle(s) and routes that will provide the most timely response. Interface with the Traffic Management Subsystem allows strategic coordination in tailoring traffic control to support emergency vehicle ingress and egress, implementation of special traffic restrictions and closures, evacuation traffic control plans, and other special strategies that adapt the transportation system to better meet the unique demands of an emergency.

Functional Area: Center Secure Area Alarm Support

Collection and response to silent and audible alarms received from travelers in secure areas (such as transit stops, rest areas, park-and-ride lots) and from on-board transit vehicles.

Functional Area: Center Secure Area Sensor Management

Management of security sensors, analysis of sensor data, correlation with surveillance data and alerts from other agencies to detect potential threats, and dissemination of threat information to other agencies. Sensors may be placed in areas such as transit stops, transit stations, rest areas, park and ride lots, modal interchange facilities, on-board a transit vehicle, etc.

Functional Area: Center Secure Area Surveillance

Management of security surveillance devices and analysis of that data to detect potential threats. Areas under surveillance may include transit stops, transit stations, rest areas, park and ride lots, modal interchange facilities, on-board a transit vehicle, etc.

Functional Area: Emergency Call-Taking

Provides interface to the emergency call-taking systems such as the Emergency Telecommunications System (e.g., 911) that correlate call information with emergencies reported by transit agencies, commercial vehicle operators, or other public safety agencies. Allows the operator to verify the incident and forward the information to the responding agencies.

Functional Area: Emergency Commercial Vehicle Response

Responds to commercial vehicle and freight equipment related emergencies. Includes incidents involving hazardous materials as well as the detection of non-permitted transport of security sensitive hazmat.

Functional Area: Emergency Data Collection

Collection and storage of information related to Emergency Management. For use by operations personnel or data archives in the region.

Functional Area: Emergency Dispatch

Dispatch emergency vehicles to incidents, tracking their location and status. Pertinent incident information is gathered and relayed to the responding units.

Functional Area: Emergency Early Warning System

Monitors alerting and advisory systems, information collected by ITS surveillance and sensors, and reports from other agencies in order to identify potential, imminent, or in-progress major incidents or disasters. Notification is provided to other ITS centers to notify the traveling public.

Functional Area: Emergency Environmental Monitoring

Collects current and forecast road and weather information that is used by the operator to more effectively manage incidents.

Functional Area: Emergency Evacuation Support

Evacuation planning and coordination to manage evacuation and reentry of a population in the vicinity of a disaster or other emergency that poses a risk to public safety.

Functional Area: Emergency Response Management

Strategic emergency planning and response capabilities and broad inter-agency interfaces to support large-scale incidents and disasters, commonly associated with Emergency Operations Centers.

Functional Area: Emergency Routing

Routing of emergency vehicles to facilitate the quickest/safest arrival. Routes may be determined based on real-time traffic information and road conditions or routes may be provided by Traffic Management on request.

Functional Area: Incident Command

Tactical decision support, resource coordination, and communications integration among emergency management agencies for Incident Commands that are established by first responders to support local management of an incident.

Functional Area: Mayday Support

Collection and response to Mayday messages received from vehicles and drivers.

Functional Area: Service Patrol Management

Dispatch and communication with roadway service patrol vehicles that monitor roads to aid motorists, offering rapid response to minor incidents.