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Next Generation of National Mutual Aid System Launches in Four States

Date: 2018-03-01
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The International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC), Esri, and the Intermedix Preparedness Division, soon to be Juvare, announced that beta testing of the new National Mutual Aid System (NMAS) will begin in four states.

In October 2017, the IAFC, leader in emergency response worldwide, entered into an agreement with Esri and the Intermedix Preparedness Division to build the next generation of NMAS software, which was originally developed by the IAFC in 2008. In partnership with Esri, the global leader in spatial analytics, and Intermedix, the global leader in health and safety solutions, the IAFC is excited to bring this valuable contribution to the next stage. The new version combines Esri’s powerful geographic information system, ArcGIS, with Intermedix’s crisis information management software, WebEOC, to better manage and track emergency service resources during large-scale emergencies that require mutual aid.

In these emergency situations, it is critical that response personnel have access to a simple, yet comprehensive mutual aid system for managing resources. WebEOC helps responders communicate more effectively, share important information, generate event reports and manage a range of tasks in one, centralized, web-based environment. These benefits allow the IAFC to effortlessly connect partner agencies and disparate organizations during response efforts.

The four states involved in beta testing are: California, Florida, Tennessee, and Utah.

“It is an exciting accomplishment to get to this point in such a short period of time,” said Chief Thomas Jenkins, the IAFC president and chairman of the board. “As we said in October, ensuring that emergency managers and responders have real-time information and resources at their fingertips is an essential element in protecting to protecting their communities. I commend the fire and emergency service leaders in these four pilot states for seeing us through this important phase of the plan.”

“Combining emergency asset data with location intelligence gives first responders a huge advantage when managing situations,” said Mike Cox, Esri fire and EMS industry manager. “The National Mutual Aid System tool incorporates geographic information into real-time capabilities that enable professionals like emergency medical technicians to have a comprehensive awareness of where an emergency is occurring, when it happened, and exactly what is needed at the scene.”

“With everything going on in today’s world, there is a real need to provide clarity and access to simplified information to those responsible for managing the overall safety within communities,” stated Robert E. Watson, President of Intermedix’s Preparedness Technology Division. “WebEOC has aided in that mission for over 20 years and, because of that experience, we are committed to the vision and goals of the National Mutual Aid System and are proud to be a part of this initiative.”

The use of spatial data to respond quickly and effectively is also paramount. ArcGIS allows mutual aid management to contextualize data by integrating the spatial analytics technology that emergency responders around the world use every day. 

The IAFC has consistently provided support for state and local fire departments and emergency medical services (EMS) communities managing disaster response and recovery. The current NMAS is used throughout the United States to identify, request and deploy resources for mutual aid support. The new version of NMAS will use the latest technology to accomplish these tasks faster, easier and more accurately.

The use of Esri’s ArcGIS and Intermedix’s WebEOC for the new NMAS version provides the IAFC with an unparalleled opportunity to securely and efficiently share information, support decision making, and provide situational awareness capabilities for jurisdictions, regions and countries around the globe.

The next generation of NMAS will be served through WebEOC and the ArcGIS Extension for WebEOC, which provides access to and integration with Esri’s powerful online tools and dashboards. As a result, this integration provides the superior data availability of WebEOC information within ArcGIS online applications, without requiring any development, middleware, or technical expertise.

- Corporate News/ (via IAFC, 2/28/18)



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