Often, when responding to a safety incident, there is no second chance. That’s why it is critical to the safety of your people that emergency communications are free from error - and happen in a timely, concise manner. Nobody should be harmed for lack of accurate and timely information. So, how can you reduce that critical period of time - from recognizing an actionable incident to initiating a comprehensive set of response actions? How can you ensure that the right people receive the right information in a matter of minutes - or even seconds? Automation.
We’ve recently been discussing ‘the Most Important Minute’ - that first minute during a crisis situation when every second counts. Since emergencies can be frantic and emotional by nature, what you do during the first minute of a crisis can severely impact the outcome. That is why it is essential to plan well in advance and be ready to execute your Emergency Response Plan, and critical communications should definitely be a part of that plan.
It’s nothing new to hear that preparation is critical to any emergency response. Like any organization, I’m sure hours, even days, have been spent crafting a plan for just about any occurrence, from a minor utility outage to a major storm or worse, an armed assailant on your grounds.
For emergency managers, testing is a rehearsal for the unforeseen or even the unthinkable. This especially applies to critical communications that, if conducted properly, could save lives.
Another clear case for multimodality.
Here’s a topic that can be uncomfortable for some to address, yet is too important to ignore:
Technology will fail.
Networks have outages.
Storms knock down phone lines.
Mobile carriers get overloaded.
Email gets delayed.
Power outages occur.
Cell towers get compromised.
ISPs have routing issues.
The ‘Expert Q&A’ series highlights the experiences of practitioners and thought-leaders in the field of Emergency Management & Response.
Bryan Ayers is the Country Security Manager for GE-Alstom Power.