Congratulations to the Queensland Fire and Rescue Service!

Congratulations to the Queensland Fire and Rescue Service (QFRS – a division of the Department of Community Safety), which won the ‘Spatially Enabling Government’ category at last Friday’s Queensland Spatial Excellence Awards!!

Mark Wallace, the Manager of the Queensland Fire and Rescue Service (QFRS) GIS Unit, was on-hand to accept the well-earned award.

They won for their GIS solution that underpinned the response and recovery efforts during the Queensland disasters earlier this year. This isn’t the first award the solution has received – QFRS were earlier this year selected from an international pool of more than 100,000 nominated organisations to receive the coveted Esri SAG technology award (presented at the UC in San Diego).

When we asked Mark Wallace about his team’s award-winning solution, he described GIS as the enabler that puts vital data and information in context, to improve the coordination of emergency response activities across the state.

 Known as the Total Operational Mapping (TOM) system, the solution operates with QFRS’ other internal systems, bringing together information from various sources and organisations – such as the Bureau of Meteorology, Department of Transport and Main Roads, and Queensland Police – to create an interactive map of events as they occur across the state. 

 TOM visually represents near-real time emergency data on a map, translating complex scenarios into an easy-to-digest universal language, enabling staff to quickly and clearly interpret large volumes of information.

As a result, says Mark, decision making and response times are significantly improved and rescue staff and resources can be appropriately allocated – saving lives and protecting property.

When tropical cyclones, severe storms and floods ravaged Queensland earlier this year, the solution provided QFRS with the capability to run scenario based models, allowing them to keep ahead of the disasters before they fully unfolded. 

You can read more about the great work they did during the crisis in this case study.

Congratulations again to Mark Wallace and his team at QFRS!

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