Code Dynamics Pty Ltd develops a software solution called Respond52 that provides critical real-time information to emergency services. It is currently installed at South Australian MFS regional stations and the SA SES is also adopting the solution.
Emergency services need accurate information quickly, yet it can be difficult for crews and managers to gather and disseminate this information, particularly as frequently as it needs to be during an emergency.
Respond52 gathers data from many sources and brings together information such as crew availability, incident information, attendance, deployment, vehicle tracking and environmental information. This data had to be gathered with minimal impact on crews who are often in a rush with their minds on the incident at hand. The hardware and software had to work flawlessly every time.
Many of the locations are in remote locations which makes on-site management difficult and costly. The hardware also needed to be rugged enough to withstand both physical and environmental punishment.
With internet connections in remote locations being intermittent, the solution needed to be able to run offline and synchronise with a cloud server when the connection was restored, and the display needed to be large enough and responsive enough for crews to rapidly absorb and interact with the data.
After an extensive evaluation process, there was a clear leader. AOpen Chromebase devices running meldCX management software.
The AOpen Chromebase hardware was rugged and tamper-proof with a huge display that was as responsive as a mobile phone. Being an all-in-one unit simplified installation and many of the remote stations conducted their own installation.
Using meldCX management software removed the traditional complexity of deploying software to remote locations, as a single upload process deploys the software to all devices in one go.
meldCX features such as viewing the remote screen, reboots and logging made supporting the solution very easy, which in turn keeps the end users happy.
meldCX also has an extensive API which provides Respond52 with access to the underlying hardware and allows tight integration of the software solution with the underlying hardware.
Rapid development: Staff at Code Dynamics didn’t have to learn how to build apps that would run on a particular operating system, saving “a good 3-6 months of research and testing”.
Expanded customer base: Within three months of the pilot installation of the app in one fire station, sixteen South Australian Metropolitan Fire Services implemented the system—and made it compulsory for all firefighters to use the app to respond to emergencies.
Code Dynamics is currently in discussions with other agencies about wider implementation.
Rapid, easy enhancements: Because testing and deployment of the app is so easy, Respond52 is now working on providing increased functionality, including pushing the system onto emergency service vehicles.
Easy trouble-shooting: Because devices are managed remotely, trouble-shooting and re-starts are quick, easy, and cost-effective.
Control and support: Respond52 maintains control of development and management, but also has access to meldCX’s support and development community.
meldCX handles that whole back-end management, so we can focus on the Respond52 product.
Generally, software is private and locked, leaving you at the mercy of the developers, but not with meldCX. This is a huge plus for us.
Improved communication: The detail, accuracy and usefulness of data is far superior to the information firefighters and managers previously had. For example, firefighters (who may not be at the station when an alert comes through) can see who has responded and where they are, allowing them to make informed decisions about whether, and how quickly, they need to respond. And fire chiefs are impressed with the accuracy of the data now available to them in real time: before Respond52 was installed, data had been entered manually and was subject to human error.
Analysis of data leading to improved decision-making: Stations can now view and analyse data after incidents. For example, they know how many calls they received in a month, how many firefighters responded to each one, how many each firefighter responded to, and how quickly they responded, and even what the weather conditions were at the time. These insights help them make decisions that will significantly improve the system and their services.
Security and robustness: Stations know their device is robust and locked-down to the app, making it secure and far more effective and useful.
The solution as a whole has just worked. Most important is that this solution is about COMMUNICATION.
The best result is that there is confidence that we can get to the emergency as quick as we can with the best crew and the most information.