Texas Highway Patrol Dispatch Center - Emergency Management Functionality

Subsystem Description

The Emergency Management (EM) Subsystem represents public safety, emergency management, and other allied agency systems that support incident management, disaster response and evacuation, security monitoring, and other security and public safety-oriented ITS applications. The subsystem includes the functions associated with fixed and mobile public safety communications centers including public safety call taker and dispatch centers operated by police (including transit police), fire, and emergency medical services. It includes the functions associated with Emergency Operations Centers that are activated at local, regional, state, and federal levels for emergencies and the portable and transportable systems that support Incident Command System operations at an incident. This subsystem also represents other allied systems including centers associated with towing and recovery, freeway service patrols, HAZMAT response teams, and mayday service providers.  

The subsystem manages sensor and surveillance equipment used to enhance transportation security of the roadway infrastructure (including bridges, tunnels, interchanges, and other key roadway segments) and the public transportation system (including transit vehicles, public areas such as transit stops and stations, facilities such as transit yards, and transit infrastructure such as rail, bridges, tunnels, or bus guideways). The subsystem provides security/surveillance services to improve traveler security in public areas not a part of the public transportation system.  

This subsystem monitors alerts, advisories, and other threat information and prepares for and responds to identified emergencies. It interfaces with other Emergency Management Subsystems to support coordinated emergency response involving multiple agencies. The subsystem stores, coordinates, and utilizes emergency response and evacuation plans to facilitate this coordinated response. As the response progresses, situation information including damage assessments, response status, evacuation information, and resource information are shared to keep all allied agencies appraised of the response. Interface with the Transit Management Subsystem allows coordinated use of transit vehicles to facilitate response to major emergencies and to support evacuation efforts. The Emergency Management Subsystem also provides a focal point for coordination of the emergency and evacuation information that is provided to the traveling public, including wide-area alerts when immediate public notification is warranted.  

The subsystem tracks and manages emergency vehicle fleets using real-time road network status and routing information from the other center subsystems to aide in selecting the emergency vehicle(s) and routes that will provide the most timely response. Interface with the Traffic Management Subsystem allows strategic coordination in tailoring traffic control to support emergency vehicle ingress and egress, implementation of special traffic restrictions and closures, evacuation traffic control plans, and other special strategies that adapt the transportation system to better meet the unique demands of an emergency.

Functional Area: Emergency Call-Taking

Provides interface to the emergency call-taking systems such as the Emergency Telecommunications System (e.g., 911) that correlate call information with emergencies reported by transit agencies, commercial vehicle operators, or other public safety agencies. Allows the operator to verify the incident and forward the information to the responding agencies.

ID Requirement Status
1 The center shall support the interface to the Emergency Telecommunications System (e.g. 911 or 7-digit call routing) to receive emergency notification information and provide it to the emergency system operator. Existing
2 The center shall receive emergency call information from 911 services and present the possible incident information to the emergency system operator. Existing
7 The center shall coordinate, correlate, and verify all emergency inputs, including those identified based on external calls and internal analysis of security sensor and surveillance data, and assign each a level of confidence. Existing
9 The center shall forward the verified emergency information to the responding agency based on the location and nature of the emergency. Existing
10 The center shall update the incident information log once the emergency system operator has verified the incident. Existing
11 The center shall provide the capability for digitized map data to act as the background to the emergency information presented to the emergency system operator. Existing

Functional Area: Emergency Dispatch

Dispatch emergency vehicles to incidents, tracking their location and status. Pertinent incident information is gathered and relayed to the responding units.

ID Requirement Status
1 The center shall dispatch emergency vehicles to respond to verified emergencies under center personnel control. Existing
2 The center shall store the current status of all emergency vehicles available for dispatch and those that have been dispatched. Existing
3 The center shall relay location and incident details to the responding vehicles. Existing
4 The center shall track the location and status of emergency vehicles responding to an emergency based on information from the emergency vehicle. Existing
5 The center shall store and maintain the emergency service responses in an action log. Existing
6 The center shall provide the capability for digitized map data to act as the background to the information presented to the emergency system operator. Existing

Functional Area: Emergency Routing

Routing of emergency vehicles to facilitate the quickest/safest arrival. Routes may be determined based on real-time traffic information and road conditions or routes may be provided by Traffic Management on request.

ID Requirement Status
3 The center shall receive status information from care facilities to determine the appropriate facility and its location. Long-term
6 The center shall track current emergency vehicle location and status. Long-term
7 The center shall calculate emergency vehicle routes, under center personnel control, based on the collected traffic and road conditions information. Long-term
10 Once the route is calculated the route shall be provided to the dispatch function. Long-term
11 The center shall provide the capability for digitized map data to act as the background to the information presented to the emergency system operator. Long-term

Functional Area: Service Patrol Management

Dispatch and communication with roadway service patrol vehicles that monitor roads to aid motorists, offering rapid response to minor incidents.

ID Requirement Status
1 The center shall dispatch roadway service patrol vehicles to identified incident locations. Existing