Build a strong partnership between transportation and public safety agencies, and establish clear operational rules from the start.
An experience operating a CAD-TMC (Computer-Aided Dispatch - Traffic Management Center) in Washington State.
- The PRIMARY ALERT CAD Interface, which filters data from the Washington State Police (WSP) CAD system and sends it to the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) Condition Acquisition and Reporting System (CARS).
- The RESPONSE SUPPORT Web Interface, which provides WSDOT traffic information to the WSP CAD dispatchers.
- The SECONDARY ALERT CAD Interface, which sends WSP CAD information to the Skagit County Emergency Medical Services (EMS) CAD system. A Secondary Alert Web Interface makes incident information from CARS available to other secondary responders.
- Understand the importance of close working relations from the start. All interviewees commented on the importance of a close working relationship among the agencies involved in this FOT. The WSP and WSDOT established a Joint Operations Policy Statement governing incident response procedures, and conducted regular meetings to discuss operational issues.
- Consider the importance of each agency's business practices in the integrated system. It is important that the integrated system not require a change in the operator's or dispatcher's work process. As an example, the WSDOT originally intended to be able to populate event information in the WSP CAD system through a "hazard flag." The WSP CAD application did not lend itself to ingesting the WSDOT data as proposed and dispatchers would have to access WSDOT event information through a Web interface, and congestion information through either a Web interface or TMC workstation software. This approach would have required dispatchers to change their normal work processes to access and view this information.
- Define what data are exchanged between agencies and when. In Washington State, the WSP had concerns about releasing all incident-related information recorded in the CAD system and did not want to provide WSDOT with information that might compromise the investigation of incidents or other proprietary information related to law enforcement activities. The two agencies eventually established a protocol on what information would be provided to WSDOT.
- Establish common incident location identifiers. There was confusion and a potential problem identified with the ability to correctly locate incidents because the WSP and WSDOT typically used somewhat different location identifiers. These location identifiers may be different names for the same landmark or may be different ways to describe the same location. Agreement on a method of describing locations among the parties involved would be essential for good communication.
- Ensure that the exchange of information between agencies is in compatible formats. WSDOT initially thought that providing information about traffic conditions and WSDOT incident management activities directly to WSP dispatchers would be beneficial to the dispatchers. However, the information was not integrated into the dispatcher's applications and the dispatcher could not use the information without making changes to it. As a result, WSDOT is now considering sending a map layer to the WSP dispatch terminals that will show events and perhaps traffic congestion. Also, WSP will be equipping vehicles with AVL. WSP has suggested that the WSDOT incident response vehicles and service patrols be equipped with AVL to display their locations in the WSP system. Together, these approaches will provide the functionality originally envisioned by WSDOT, and would fit much better into the WSP dispatchers' work process as well.
Published By: Prepared by SAIC for the USDOT
Source Date: July 2006
EDL Number: 14325URL: http://ntl.bts.gov/lib//jpodocs/repts_te//14325.htm
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Intelligent Transportation Systems > Freeway Management > Surveillance > Traffic
Intelligent Transportation Systems > Freeway Management > Information Dissemination > Dynamic Message Signs
Intelligent Transportation Systems > Traffic Incident Management > Surveillance & Detection
Intelligent Transportation Systems > Traffic Incident Management > Information Dissemination
Intelligent Transportation Systems > Emergency Management > Response & Recovery
Intelligent Transportation Systems > Transportation Management Centers > Permanent TMCs > Freeway
CCTV, closed circuit television cameras, road monitoring, sensors, vehicle detector, traffic detection, traffic monitoring, congestion monitoring, DMS, CMS, VMS, Changeable Message Signs, Variable Message Signs