The Territory Labor Government today launched a new Bushfires Emergency Management System (BEMS) to help improve safety outcomes for firefighters and Territorians.
This Government has worked with Telstra to develop a technological solution that will provide volunteer firefighters with the latest, real-time information about weather conditions, crew locations, fire status, permit burns and messages from Bushfires NT in the field, using tablet devices.
This solution will lead to improved safety, response times and efficiency when fighting fires, conducting planned burns or providing permits to burn.
The rollout will cover the five Bushfires NT management zones Vernon Arafura, Arnhem, Savanna, Barkly and Alice Springs.
These devices operate on the secure NTG IT system on the Telstra mobile network and more than 25 devices are being used operationally by volunteers with more to be allocated in the near future.
An online interface, Field Connect has also been developed for volunteers and staff to access BEMS while outside of the mobile coverage area, providing automated integration and caching of data when the devices are out of mobile coverage areas allowing firefighters to still process information offline.
As noted by the Minister for Infrastructure, Planning and Logistics, Eva Lawler:
We all know Bushfires NT staff and volunteers do a great job keeping our community safe thats why I am proud to be making their jobs easier and safer with the launch of the new BEMS system.
Todays launch builds on this Governments promise to improve safety outcomes in the rural area combined with the recent announcement of construction of a new Bushfires NT headquarters set to begin this year.
This Governments investment in this new system and new facility brings vital services together and closer to one of the largest communities it serves.
As noted by Area General Manager Nic Danks:
Telstra is happy to be working with the Northern Territory Government on this exciting technology advancement for the NT.
This new emergency management solution will be using the power of the Telstra Mobile network to improve community safety, increase emergency response rates and enable real time updates to the public when they are needed most.
As we expand our mobile coverage across the NT in the future, this technology can be easily expanded to assist volunteers and Bushfires NT staff in the management of bushfires.