Home News GIS medals in the safety venue at the Salt Lake City Olympics

GIS medals in the safety venue at the Salt Lake City Olympics

Each day during the Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, Utah, many athletes compete in different activities at the same time at separate venues, but in the public safety arena, the playing field is the same for all the agencies monitoring the Olympic activities. For the people at the Utah Olympic Public Safety Command (UOPSC), a geographic information system (GIS) is the tool that standardizes the ground plane by delivering the same accurate, relevant, and up-to-date data to all the people keeping an eye on the situation.

Software from ESRI is playing an instrumental role in the implementation of the theatre-wide public safety and security management program running at UOPSC. Several ESRI business partners are supplying technical assistance and software applications at the Olympic Command Centre including SAIC of San Diego and eteam.com of Canoga Park, California. The E Team software, which is a Web-based application, and SAIC’s Consequences Assessment Tool Set (CATS), which use ESRI’s ArcIMS and ArcView software respectively, have been integrated into a single system.

This software system, which is being used by more than 3,000 people during the Olympics, dramatically improves the ability of public safety agencies to prepare for, respond to, and recover from disasters and major events. The suite of tools enables emergency and event management personnel to share critical information that is required for accurate and timely situational awareness.

UOPSC personnel are also tracking more than 500 athlete transport shuttles and a fleet of emergency vehicles with software from another ESRI business partner, CompassCom of Denver. This software package creates athlete bus routes and buffers around the routes in ArcView and uses the ArcView layers with ESRI’s MapObjects to monitor the locations of the vehicles. The buses have GPS units with wireless modems. If a driver deviates from the route, the system sends an alert, and drivers can trip an alarm to notify the Command Center if there is a problem.