Leveraging Technology to Provide Officials with Effective Warning...

Leveraging Technology to Provide Officials with Effective Warning tools

By Gov CIO Outlook | Wednesday, January 08, 2020

Government officials are utilizing technology to develop modern public safety emergency warning systems in their attempts to keep the public safe instead of relying on outdated systems.

Fremont, CA: Being affected by the consequences of deadly wildfires and other extreme situations in 2018 and 2019, public safety should be the government’s top priority. However, the unfortunate reality is that a number of U.S. communities are underserved, especially when it comes to critical communications technology for public safety during emergencies. The outdated, siren-only to alert the public of impending danger can expose the public to potential life-safety risks. Legacy siren systems are incapable of providing enough information about the nature of an emergency and the necessary actions to be taken by people to protect their lives.

Also, these siren systems have other disadvantages, like when the power and communication infrastructure fails, these siren systems cease to operate. Maintenance is another limiting issue to reliability. And people in areas where sirens are tested ignore the warning or stick to a one-size-fits-all emergency plan, which could be more dangerous than no plan at all.

Advancements in public safety mass notification technology now allow emergency management officials to protect populations at-risk with geographically specific, audible voice warnings and actionable informatio

n. These are modern public mass notification systems that are cloud-based, secure, and can be activated and controlled remotely by authorized users using tablets, desktops, or laptops. These systems have solar-powered battery backup and feature satellite connectivity to provide greater system effectiveness and reliability. Further, software applications issue geographically targeted alerts to cellphones. Their critical capabilities of location-based mobile mass messaging to the cellphones of populations in impending danger successfully protect the public.

Integrated voice/siren installations allow emergency management officials to alert and deliver potentially life-saving information to people at risk. Also, the unified, multi-channel approach increases the number of people receiving warning notification before, after, and during the crisis. Today’s design engineers prefer using sophisticated acoustic modeling software to predict and access each community environment, identify potential problems, and thereby recommending integration and equipment catering to the unique needs and topography. System standardization achieves greater effectiveness for communities in the same region. Thus, with the increasing disasters and other deadly events, the importance of delivering critical communications having clear, concise warning and actionable information is growing than ever before.

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