Van Buren County, Arkansas has fallen victim to extreme weather throughout the spring season. Nevertheless, county officials are pleased with the remarkable new culture of emergency response occurring during dangerous events. This new standard of emergency management, supplied by Salamander, is known as Intelligent Accountability, and it is altering the way emergency officials manage disaster. AAMSCO, a Salamander RTC, was able to implement Intelligent Accountability efficiently and effectively during this tragic disaster.
When a devastating April tornado tore through several towns in Van Buren County, officials were able to put Salamander equipment to work. Products by Salamander are setting a new industry standard, and Van Buren has discovered this truth in a unique and fortunate manner.
Only half an hour after installation and training for the Van Buren County Office of Emergency was completed, the county was met head on by the massive tornado on April 10, 2013.
AAMSCO came on site to assist with implementing Salamander’s RAPID-TAG system, which enabled officials to credential every volunteer at the onset of the disaster. County officials made note of their ability to capture whom had arrived, as well as when and from what location they arrived from. Salamander equipment was immediately put to work, and the technology spoke for itself:
“Being able to credential my volunteers on the onset was wonderful. The reason I say ‘wonderful’ is that not only could I capture who came in and what time they came in; but I could also capture what location they came in. One, I could track my volunteer hours. Two, as a safety precaution, I knew where the people were. So if I had an emergency, which I had the other day. So I was able to go into the RapidTAG system, know exactly where each volunteer came from, what organization they were with, and make sure that the appropriate managerial support knew where we were taking them and what actually happened.”
Salamander also tracks emergency responders in real time, offering yet another feature that did not go unnoticed by emergency officials in Van Buren County. Salamander’s tracking equipment allowed emergency management to track the hours of every responder, make note of each responders exact current location, as well as to identify which organization a specific volunteer represented.
One official noted: “It’s not only the accountability of where people are and making sure we have those numbers for my own local government, but being able to track their movement was also instrumental in our response.”
The ability to manage every single emergency responder in real time was another technological advance provided by Salamander. Emergency officials recounted the ease at which managerial support was informed of the orders and results of each responder. Volunteers on the ground were able to receive from management directions to a new task or alerts of impending danger, all in real time.
The solution AAMSCO provided changed the way Van Buren County responded to disaster. As a result, emergency management will no longer be defined by the frantic response of strangers, but rather by the movements of badged responders equipped with specific instructions and real time management.
Salamander’s Intelligent Accountability has altered the emergency management culture in Van Buren County, Arkansas, and will continue to redefine the emergency management industry.