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Application Research & Testing for Emergency Management Intelligent Systems


ARTEMIS aims to pilot telematics systems to streamline management action in emergencies which are often aggravated by inadequate planning and coordination, insufficiently trained staff or lack of technical information resources. Appropriate systems can offer the networks and software to support good decisions in an emergency. This project will first focus on a system for industrial accidents and floods, with a view to wider applications. Among its longer-term benefits will be integrated monitoring and planning functions, a firm basis for inter-agency coordination of action plans and sound training for crisis management.

The management of emergencies, whether resulting from natural or man-made causes, faces major difficulties as a result of:
- poor and inefficient planning
- lack of inter-agency co-ordination
- insufficient information
- shortage of experience and training of responders
- weak technical support (databases, experts, decision support tools, etc.)
- lack of real-time monitoring of changing conditions etc.
Recent developments in the fields of telematics and knowledge-based systems offer prospects of an important contribution being made to emergency management. These developments make it possible to combine reliable and efficient data acquisition networks, which feed in data in real time, with on-line intelligent software, which can give the right answers and explanations to operators. Good decisions can be supported through dialogue between the system and its operators.
The objective of the present project is to provide the groundwork for a system which achieves that. It aims to establish user requirements and functional specifications. Initially two classes of emergency situations will be covered: industrial accidents and floods. Eventually it is intended that the specifications be applied to a wide range of emergency situations. When fully implemented the resulting system will enable emergency management and planning authorities to:
- integrate monitoring and planning functions
- establish a coherent framework for inter-agency co-ordination of plans
- draft plans to be implemented in response to different types of emergency
- train decision-makers in crisis management
- dynamically manage an emergency situation when it arises from a major incident
- aid decision makers in the longer-term management of an incident as it evolves
- aid longer-term land use and infrastructure planning.
The present project will arrive at a full specification for such a system covering:
- user requirements
- functional specifications
- evaluation framework
- specification of model adaptation and development requirements
- the building of a 'mock-up' of the final system.

Major Validation Sites
Prefecture of West Attica, Athens, GR
Spanish Ministry of Public Works, Valencia, ES

Users will be involved in various stages throughout the project. Included will be major actors in emergency management in Greece and Spain, e.g. the Fire Corps of Greece, the Civil Protection Authority of Spain, the Prefecture of West Attica, and the General Directorate for Hydraulic Works in Spain.

User requirements will be established through a series of structured group discussions. System architecture and modelling requirements will be specified for full development. A 'mock-up' of the system will be constructed to aid interaction with users and to demonstrate basic system functionalities.

Expected Benefits
- improved performance of emergency management authorities, resulting in less material damage and loss of life, whether from man-made or natural disasters
- ability of political and civil authorities to perform their tasks more effectively and efficiently
- in the case of industrial accidents, less damage and lower insurance payments due to better response from emergency units
- for supplier companies, value added to telematics infrastructures, which will provide added incentive for wider adoption and installation.

Contribution to EU Policies
The system is expected to result in improved practices in emergency management, leading to a common platform for the development of site-specific management systems. It will speed up the full implementation of the SEVESO Directive.

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