Washington State and Benton County Exercise EmerGeo (CSEPP)

EmerGeo emergency mapping software was used last week to support communications and interoperability during a major exercise.

June 7, 2007

VANCOUVER B.C. – shortly after EmerGeo Solutions installed its EmerGeo™ emergency mapping software in the State of Washington and Benton County Emergency Operation Centers, the software was put to the test during a multi-agency Chemical Stockpile Emergency Protection Program (CSEPP) exercise on May 22, 2007.

The U.S. Army has safely stored chemical warfare agents for decades at seven U.S. Army installations around the United States. One of these installations is the Umatilla Chemical Depot near Hermiston, Oregon. In 1985, Congress ordered the destruction of these weapons and subsequently ordered “maximum protection” of the public near the installations until the chemical weapons were gone. Emergency Operations Centers in Umatilla, Morrow and Benton counties (Washington) as well as the states of Oregon and Washington, maintain readiness to coordinate response activities through regular exercising of state-of-the art computer software to track and forecast toxic plumes.

The Washington State Division of Emergency Management, Benton County Emergency Services along with several local hospitals, fire and police agencies, and volunteers participated in the annual exercise of the Chemical Stockpile Emergency Preparedness Plan (CSEPP).

“In the Benton County EOC, during this exercise, we were able to use EmerGeo to allow our Law Enforcement and Shelter representatives to input their own locations on the Incident Map. This freed up our mapping person to keep the Plume data current on the map. Resulting in an up-to-date incident map that was available on each desk top in the EOC”, states Lyle Ball, Department of Energy Planner.

The State of Washington had a similar experience with the EmerGeo software. Allen Jakobitz, Science & Technology Program Manager for Washington State Emergency Management reported “I am very satisfied with the use of EmerGeo during this first exercise. I didn’t have any problems with the application”.

The Umatilla area is safer today, thanks to the foresight of Benton County and the State of Washington Emergency Management Division to implement an OpenGIS® based emergency mapping application to support CSEPP’s public safety program.

EmerGeo Solutions’ participation with these organizations will continue to strengthen their emergency readiness capabilities for residents and businesses in the immediate vicinity around the Depot until the chemical munitions are eliminated forever.

More information on CSEPP can be found at http://www.csepp.net/frcsepp.html.

EmerGeo Solutions, Inc. provides consulting services and fully integrated situation awareness technology solutions to help manage risk in Emergency Management, Environment Health & Safety, Security and Business Resilience for government and industry. Our EmerGeo software application provides all decision-makers with timely access to critical information and the decision-support tools needed before, during and after emergencies and major events.

EmerGeo’s unique managed Common Operating Picture (mCOP™) technology allows information stored in siloed systems to be shared securely and in a controlled way among work groups so that all decision-makers are working from the most up-to-date, accurate and validated information available. Our hosted Learning Management System (eLearning) ensures customers can implement our technology and best practices in a cost-effective manner.