How BCSARA Deployed D4H as a Provincial Wide Data Management System Across 80 SAR Teams
Here's how D4H supports over 2,500 emergency responders across British Columbia.
BCSARA acts as a liaison between Emergency Management British Columbia, the RCMP, local police forces, and 80 SAR groups that consist of over 2500 hard-working volunteers. Delivery of the Search and Rescue service in British Columbia has many unique challenges; not only is the province vast in size but terrain and weather can be extreme.
Each year, these SAR groups respond to over 1,600 incidents involving over 2,100 lost or injured persons. Together these volunteers donate over 100,000 hours of their time on callouts annually, and an astounding 95% of subjects are found or rescued within the first 24 hours of a volunteer SAR group being activated. The cost to replace this volunteer service in direct salary dollars alone would exceed $20,000,000 annually.
Prior to implementing D4H, BCSARA struggled to plan and fund training. This was mainly due to the fact that there was no reliable provincial data available to establish the current level of training or to forecast what was actually required to address call volume and incident types.
Completion of an operational needs analysis established that a common records management system for certification and use of longer-term training calendars was needed. D4H was tasked with putting a solution in place to ease the centralized administrative burden of the organization as a whole and to help each of the 80 independent SAR teams manage their personnel, equipment, and incident reporting records.
BCSARA needed to connect the individual teams together to report upwards to them and create large datasets to understand their resources, capabilities, personnel, and equipment available within their organization. BCSARA had a clear goal to develop and implement a provincial database to facilitate the following:
- Document operational history in order to identify and project trends in incident response.
- Use incident response history to identify and determine training requirements.
- Document and track the training of all volunteers.
- Document and track equipment life-cycle asset management, including depreciation of major capital items.
- Document subject behavior profiles in an ISRID-compatible (International Search and Rescue Information Database) format in order to contribute to the NSS (National Search and rescue Secretariat) KMS (Knowledge Management System).
- Submission of task reports in an electronic format.
- Tracking of volunteer hours from task reports (operational), training, administration, maintenance, and prevention.
D4H specializes in the deployment of solutions for the management of multiple or individual SAR teams. Our solutions allow SAR organizations to manage their incidents, personnel, and equipment and submit reports to Government Office for the creation of shared statistics.
An Organization Account sits above the 80 SAR teams, drawing information from each of these individual accounts. Allowing BCSARA to accumulate the records needed to analyze and report on SAR team activity across the entire Province.
“The solution requested through a competitive RFP process needed to meet the complex needs of both BCSARA and the teams themselves. Our complete organization records system allows them to share and manage data across all SAR units in the entire Province. They can now deep-dive down through teams into their incidents, membership, and training to compare. Full self-service reporting provides detailed statistics on all teams activities, with automated monthly, quarterly, and annual reporting.”
Robin Blandford, CEO, D4H Technologies.
D4H automatically generates reports on volunteer hours, allowing sound financial planning to take place for critical operational decisions such as annual provincial, regional and SAR group training plans, recruitment and equipment upgrading.
Historical data can be utilized to forecast SAR team needs to identify trends, and provide critical data for researchers into subject behavior and search techniques. The software will also provide a platform for BCSARA groups to submit incident reports and expense claims in an electronic format.
Lost Person Behavior
D4H generates vital information that has been extremely difficult to obtain in the past. The high incident call volume in British Columbia generates significant lost person behavior statistics that can be exported to the national data system. It will also provide key decision-making data.