Capita has won a contract to provide a new control room system to North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Authority in the UK. The Authority employs around 850 staff and covers 831,000 hectares of urban and rural land containing a population of 764,000 residents.
It is the first authority to adopt the latest version of Capita’s command and control solution, which incorporates the voice communication platform and latest mobile technology, to offer one combined solution.
The legacy system was replaced with the new system in March 2013, with implementation, migration and training activities delivered on schedule. The system has a simpler, more user-friendly design with improved incident report management, communications, routing and crewing functions; for example, the resource information has been expanded to include details of the crew, such as key skills, training and availability.
As well as enhancing the performance, resilience and functionality of the control room, the new system represents some significant ‘ways of working’ changes for the Authority.
Automated vehicle location enables the system to mobilise the nearest available and most appropriate resource to an incident, rather than dispatching according to station proximity.
The system also offers a flexible method of data transfer between different platforms and agencies, giving the Authority the potential to explore interagency working in the future, which will mean that incidents can be dealt with more effectively and efficiently.
Owen Hayward, Head of Service Development at North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service, said: ‘In the last year alone, North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service's control room has responded to 15,358 calls, 8,112 incidents, 1,790 reported fires and approximately 500 road accidents. An effective and efficient command and control system is vital.
‘Our new system will bring a number of marked efficiencies to the work we do. In particular the ability to identify accurately the nearest appliance to an incident will contribute significantly to providing an effective response to emergencies. The technology also allows us to collaborate more easily with other fire and rescue services to improve resilience of the mobilising arrangements.’
George Godliman, managing director of Capita Communications and Control Solutions, said: ‘The enthusiasm with which North Yorkshire FRS embraced our new solution allowed us to deliver the project on time and within budget and enabled North Yorkshire to start to realise the business benefits immediately.’