When hurricanes or other threats loom, rapid, two-way communication with critical details, instructions and updates plays a critical role in protecting people and property.
High-risk urban areas have unique communication needs
In 2003 the Department of Homeland Security designated the city of Miami a high-risk urban area. The designation was in part because of the frequency of hurricanes that threaten the region every June through November, and in part because the city was seen as a possible port of entry for terrorists or acts of terrorism. The Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI) program was created to enhance the preparedness and response of such high-risk cities by assisting with prevention, response to, and recovery from severe weather and acts of terrorism.
The Problem: How to alert citizens and mobilize response teams
Due to the high frequency of natural disasters and the potential for terrorist attack, Miami’s Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI) needed the ability to contact various agencies and responders throughout its four counties on a moment’s notice so that they might alert citizens, gather emergency support, and execute the proper emergency procedures as quickly as possible.
The Solution: MIR3 from OnSolve
During hurricane season the need for immediate emergency response is critical, as is the maintenance and continuity of public services. Knowing this, when Hurricane Ivan made the weather radar, Miami UASI moved quickly to implement protection for all four of its counties. With funds from Homeland Security, MIR3 from OnSolve was successfully put into place in for Palm Beach, Broward, Monroe, and Miami-Dade counties.
Since that time, the city of Miami has used the platform regularly to speed the process of notifying and mobilizing first responders and other key individuals during disasters that pose a threat to businesses, critical government operations and human lives.
With MIR3, Miami UASI can:
- Quickly launch any type of mass notification and alert by using the Web interface, sending an email or simply making a phone call
- Deliver notifications in various languages or via text-to-speech in order to address the needs of the multi-lingual community in the four counties served by the solution
- Track and report all alerts in order to create a closed loop that show who received which alerts, when and their response if one was provided. This feedback loop is useful for continuous process improvement at Miami UASI
The bottom line
Miami UASI responded to the designation of being high-risk urban area by adopting MIR3 from OnSolve in order to be prepared for any type disaster or crisis. Although threats remain and likely always will, the city is prepared to deal with the inevitable interruptions as smoothly as possible. Citizens are protected and public services now have a better chance of being kept up and running. “