Index > Transportation & Logistics: Public/Private Partnerships
January 2012: Almost one year ago exactly, the Obama administration signed into law the "Local Community Radio Act" which allowed smaller community radio stations the ability to broadcast to their communities. At the forefront of the push to give greater radio access to communities is the Prometheus Radio Project. Their efforts help to create local communities of radio broadcasters which could help to disseminate information quickly in the event of a disaster.
January 2011: Australian government authorities are working overtime to try and help the communities of Queensland in the midst of epic flooding, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation reported. More than 9,000 homes in Brisbane, the country's third largest city, are expected to be impacted by flood waters, while the city's downtown central business center cut it's electricity, the BBC reported.
July 2010: The Department of Homeland Security has announced the first phase of a national program called "See Something Say Something" in a partnership with Amtrak through the nationwide Suspicious Activity Reporting initiative. DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano said in the press release, "Implementing a national suspicious activity reporting partnership with Amtrak and expanding the 'See Something Say Something' campaign strengthens our ability to guard against terrorism and crime."
March 28 '08: In a press release the DC Safetyautomobile emergency preparedness kit company has announced a new partnership with luxury auto maker DiMora Motorcar to provide first aid and emergency response mobile kits for the Natalia SLS 2 sedan.
March 13 '08 Duos Technologies announced in February that it had partnered with Baptist Health Enterprises to upgrade the hospital system's security and surveillance network, a press release announced. Baptist Health is the largest non-proft healthcare provider in the state.
March 10 '08: The Chicago Sun-Times reported a new program begun by Mayor Richard Daley to link the city's public schools' 4500 surveillance cameras into a network which can be accessed by police and first responders. The addition of the public schools' cameras will augment the existing 10,000 public and private cameras already being monitored by the city's law enforcement agencies.
March 4 '08: A new technology has been developed by an Australian company which derives energy from ceramic cells that can also double as mini-power stations, Reuters reported. The company, Ceramic Fuel Cells Unlimited has just signed a large contract with the Dutch energy firm Nuon to install the cells into Dutch homes by the end of 2009.
January 29 '08: In San Francisco last October, the city announced a new secure web-based information-sharing portal for first responders and community stakeholders, a press release announced. Working with Collaborative Fusion, a consulting, technology, first response and homeland security firm, the city has developed the www.HelpBayArea.org.
January 8 '08: The makers of the Hexayurt, a portable and quick-setup emergency shelter have been working on the Disastr.org emergency evacuation plan for cities and communities using a peer-to-peer resource allocation process which would provide sheltering for potentially hundreds of thousands of people. The value of having portable emergency shelters using scant resources was evident when the company participated in the 2006 Strong Angel III exercise, the New York Times reported.
December 10 '07: A partnership of response and technology organizations has announced a new initiative to "improve interoperable, inter-organizational communications and information sharing for emergency preparedness, response and recovery," a press release announced. The Core Services Initiative is being pushed by the COMCARE Emergency Response Alliance, the Open Geospatial Consortium, Inc.,, the National Emergency Number Association, and the National Association of State Fire Marshals. COMCARE Director Steve Cooper said the initiative would work to develop "Core Services" of "shared information technology services 'in the middle'".
November 16 '07: The Federal Communications Commission has announced a new push to link rural hospitals to urban doctors through the Internet, WBBM AM 780 reported. "Speaking in Chicago, FCC Chairman Kevin Martin outlined the $400 million Rural Health Care pilot program which he says will link 6,000 hospitals, clinics and research facilities in 43 states."
November 12, 2007 In a press release from Princeton University, computer scientists have announced a new architecture "that enables the secure transmission of crucial rescue information to first responders during events such as natural disasters, fires or terrorist attacks." According to a story in NetworkWorld, the new framework allows first responders to exchange sensitive information on a "as-needed basis".
November 9 '07: Local police officers in Athens County, Ohio and the City of Columbus will begin to train for real-life response situations using virtual technology developed by Ohio University's School of Telecommunications and Game Research and Immersive Design (GRID), the Athens News reported. The new virtual training technology was developed through local homeland security grants totaling $702,000.
November 8 '07: In Los Lunas, New Mexico, first responders will begin to use WiFi to communicate interoperably using the one of the largest wireless communications system of its type in North America, a press release has announced. The network was established by Vivato Networks which was recently acquired byCatcher Holdings Inc.. Responders will use laptop and mobile devices developed by Catcher.
October 26 '07: Last year the United Nations established the "United Nations Platform for Space-based Information for Disaster Management and Emergency Response" (UN SPIDER) to facilitate international response to disasters using satellite technology. In a press release, UN officials said that using satellite technology, developing nations and communities in remote areas would have greater access to sensitive real-time information while international relief organizations would have greater situational awareness.
October 24 '07: Information sharing and situational awareness company, NC4 has announced, a new partnership with the Department of Homeland Security to provide "a trusted secure platform for the rapid dissemination of intelligence data at the (Controlled Unclassified Information) CUI level to 10,000 users" which will include public and private sector recipients on the federal, state, local and tribal levels.
October 16 '07: In the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, one of the salient problems facing those residents along the Gulf Coast was their ability to prove who they were to be able to receive the necessary services for recovery after the storm. Identity theft was rampant, and today is a growing problem for many people and corporations. In a press release today, a new initiative has been launched which partners industry, government, and academic organizations together "to develop and promote standards for identity credentials."
October 2 '07: In Vermont, the Rutherland Herald ran a story from the Associated Press about a new satellite phone system which is being planned for the rural parts of the state to help emergency response officials. The $1 billion system is expected to go online next year and will help "fill in the gaps in radio and cell phone communications."
September 28 '07: In the aftermath of disasters and emergencies, many communities must find ways to recover without the help of state or federal assistance for the first 72 hours. To support response operations, businesses within that community can provide valuable assistance - with existing resources in the location of the recovery process - through cooperation with local, state and federal emergency responders and first responders. One of the ways to help coordinate such resources and information is through a network much like the Essential Public Network, launched today by the Corporate Crisis Response Officers Association.
September 19 '07: Government Technology News reported a partnership in San Jose, California which is partnering the local police department with an Internet map mashup startup to provide maps for community residents so they know if crimes have occurred in their area.
September 12 '07: PC World reported that several Internet tech firms have partnered with computer users to search for the missing adventurer Steve Fossett, who disappeared last week when scouting speed trial locations in the Nevadan desert last week. The companies cooperating to look for Fossett are Google Earth, Amazon.com's Mechanical Turk and GeoEye.
August 30 '07: The Financial Services Information Sharing and Analysis Center, a consortium of the nation's largest financial services designed to share timely information about emergencies and disasters, has chosen Message One's AlertFind notification system to help spread alert messaging, ByteandSwtich.com reported.
August 29 '07: In a press release, chemical and railroad industry experts announced training programs for California first responders through a partnership called Transportation Community Awareness and Emergency Response. TRANSCAER, started in 1986, is a partnership designed to teach best practices to those responding to chemical and railroad disasters.
August 22 '07: Inhabitat reported that in the aftermath of the 2007 Peru Earthquake which has already claimed 500 people, the architecture group Architecture for Humanity has begun to look for donations to help response and recovery efforts for more stable and safer buildings in the affected communities.
August 15 '07: In a press release, Jewish Hospital officials in Louisville, KY announced and internal preparedness exercise in July which "was able to integrate multiple software platforms," to help create an overall efficient situational awareness and response. The Operation Rapid Response "demonstrated synergies in advanced technologies," like the iMapData software from ChoicePoint and Tridium's Niagara Frameworkİ.
August 9 '07: The U.S. Coast Guard will participate in a mock emergency exercise on St. Thomas, U.S.V.I with Norwegian Cruise Lines today the Coast Guard News reported. The one-day exercise is a full-scale operation officials said.
August 6 '07: When the I-35W bridge collapsed into the Mississippi River in Minneapolis last week, regular citizens at the scene began taking videos and photos of the disaster and then posting that information and media to internet sharing sites, blogs and community groups. The Boston Herald reported that emergency officials in Minneapolis have taken that information and are using it - actively cooperating with citizens who recorded the media.
July 27 '07: In Kentucky, the Jewish Hospital Medical Center South in Built County has been working with tech company FacilityOneİ to develop situational awareness software to help resource and man-power management during a disaster, the Courier Journal in Louisville reported.
May 25 '07: In Philadelphia, city officials said they are hoping a public/private partnership to introduce a city-wide wireless internet network is one step closer to realization with the approval of a 15-square mile testing zone, Information Week reported. If the testing zone is successful, city officials will begin working to construct the larger 135-square mile WiFi network.
May 22 '07: Consolidated Edison Inc. and the Department of Homeland Security will partner in a $39.3 million federally funded project dubbed "Project Hydra" to increase the resiliency of New York City's electric grid by installing new superconducter power lines to help prevent blackouts caused by power surges, the Associated Press reported.
May 21 '07: On Tuesday, May 22 the Ford Motor Company and Michigan State University will participate in a disaster preparedness and response competition to test the car company's ability to address emergency situations, an MSU press release announced.
May 8 '07: The Associated Press reported that after the recent tanker crash in California which destroyed a major overpass in the San Francisco metro area, online mapping engineers quickly worked to revise their software to re-route people away from the site of the accident - a move toward quicker updating that could also help first responders and emergency personnel.
May 2 '07: Northrop Grumman Corp. and the Fire Department of New York participated in a wireless communications network exercise at 7 World Trade Center recently to test new information-sharing technologies, the Associated Press reported. During the exercise, officials tested their ability to send video surveillance to remote locations for situational awareness and real-time field evaluations.
March 27 '07: Colorado officials said they have recently begun to use several types of visual mapping technology along with web-based location tracking software to create a "mashup" application which can locate specific events and also give accurate weather forecasts for the area to help responders adequately adjust, FCW.com reported.
March 23 '07: The Associated Press reported that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta have partnered withe General Motor Corp.'s OnStar service to help improve response times to automobile accidents. On Wednesday, General Motors announced "a partnership with federal health officials to create guidelines ... for the use of real-time crash data to help emergency services."
March 21 '07: Medical specialists at the Johns Hopkins University have developed new free medical disaster response software for hospital officials to help calculate "the impact of such crises as a flu epidemic, bioterrorist attack, flood or plane crash," the JHU Gazette reported.
February 14 '07: In 2006 about 115 organizations, government agencies and members of the private sector participated in Cyber Storm which tested the government and industry's ability to respond and communicate during a simulated cyberterrorist attack. InfoWorld reported that a new Cyber Storm is being planned for 2008 and will include outside industries such as the chemical and nuclear energy industries.
January 26 '07: Researchers at the Louisiana State Medical Society Educational and Research Foundation have received a grant totaling $254,000 from the Physician's Foundation for Health Systems Excellence to conduct a study analyzing state and local emergency evacuation and preparation plans during Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, the Shreveport Times reported.
January 9 '07: Using existing electrical lines built into a building's walls the U.S., the Transportation Security Administration has partnered with technology companies to design broadband communications networks which would provide a wireless intranet system at the nation's airports, InformationWeek reported in its January 8 issue.
October 26 '06: Should a Category 5 hurricane strike the Florida coast, federal officials working for the Federal Emergency Management Agency, are developing a plan to help state officials prepare for mitigation or response in the even that Miami is hit or that elderly and weakened levees on Lake Okeechobee break, the Miami Herald reported Wednesday.
October 9 '06: Grants to firefighters around the country from homeland security funds will total close to $485 million in the 2006 fiscal year, according to Department of Homeland Security press releases and announcements. The grants are a part of a larger DHS-led program called the Assistance to Firefighters Grants program that is working to coordinate the national level of preparedness and response of firefighters.
September 15 '06: The Department of Homeland Security announced new federal grants of more than $1.35 billion to build security measures at the nation's ports to detect nuclear weapons being smuggled into the US. The new system, called the Cargo Advanced Automated Radiography System will also be able to detect drugs and high explosives.
September 7 '06: A cooperative effort by the Department of Homeland Security with several non-profit and community service organizations is working to help the elderly and those with disabilities in preparing for national emergencies - both natural and man-made, a DHS press release read.
August 31 '06: Upper-level coordination of relief agencies during an emergency is essential for response and recovery operations immediately after a disaster, a new report from the Aspen Institute found. Big Medicine quoted the report this week saying that, "Hurricane Katrina showed that there is no central disaster planning and coordination entity that connects the local to the national."
August 18 '06: A new medical bracelet being designed by IBM will be used by first responders in the St. Louis area to help improve disaster-site medical response and victim triage, a press release announced this week.
July 5 '06: The use of mobile tracking technology can be helpful for emergency management coordination and for tracking terrorists, proponents of radio frequency identification say. Government Computer News reported Monday that according to a report released by the Public Policy Institute of California, RFID tracking on shipping containers would help "to enhance the efficiency of the global containerized supply chain may do more to prevent terrorist groups from using container shipping as a conveyor of weapons."
June 29 '06: A new report released by the nonpartisan Public Policy Institute of California found the economic impact of a terrorist attack potentially the most damaging to the nation because of a lack of coordination, response and failing security measures Knight Ridder News Wire reported Tuesday. "Inadequate federal funding and staffing has lowered or stalled a raft of security initiatives that lawmakers scurried to create after the threat of the nation's 361 ports came into focus," following the attacks on September 11, 2001 KRT Wire continued. A greater focus should be placed on the economic recovery following a terrorist attack, the report concluded.
June 20 '06: New legislation in the House would look into securing the more than 5 million shipments of cargo made every day on the nation's interstate system using tractor trailers in the hopes of preventing terrorists from using the trucks as a means to ship weapons of mass destruction, or other harmful substances according to a press release from Rep. Jane Harman, the ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee. During a hearing last week, lawmakers held an Economic Security, Infrastructure Protection, and Cyber Security subcommittee hearing to discuss the Screening Applied Fairly and Equitably to Truckers Act of 2006 (SAFE). The legislation's goal would be to "reform current, inefficient hazmat program at (Transportation Security Administration) TSA, which screens every trucker," for hazardous materials, regardless of the material they are hauling.
May 26 '06: A $6.5 million decontamination facility is being built at the Children's National Medical Center in Washington DC to help children who would become victims of a biological, chemical or radiological attack, Global Security Newswire reported.
May 22 '06: Questions surrounding border security are being raised by the use of radio frequency identification with human identification according to technology experts and other officials in the Department of Homeland Security, Government Computer News reported over the weekend.
May 11 '06: Federal officials are preparing a massive infrastructure change on the internet by moving away from an outdated version which was built in the 1970's to a new internet protocol called Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6).
April 20 '06: Congress is considering new legislation which would involve the federal government in chemical plant security, the Houston Chronicle reported Wednesday. "In the Houston area, where sprawling chemical facilities along the Ship Channel are intermingled with parks and private homes," the Chronicle reported, "plant security would seem to have special relevance ... According to one congressional report, Texas is home to as many as 29 high-risk plants near population centers of 1 million or more ... and many are along the Ship Channel."
April 10 '06: City-wide wireless networks and alternative energy resources are some of the ways the face of critical infrastructure is changing according to several stories in the New York Times on Monday.
March 22 '06: Emergency management officials in California are marking the 100th anniversary of the San Francisco earthquake by urging residents in the state "to be aware that a major earthquake can occur at any moment - day or night - and be prepared for it when it does," a Federal Emergency Management statement read.
March 9 '06: Government Technology News reported that a growing number of cities and municipalities are starting to incorporate wireless networks into their cities' infrastructure. Those advocating a larger wireless internet presence say greater cooperation between government bodies and the private sector will be necessary "to create the investment required not just for hundreds, but possibly even thousands of wireless community initiatives."
January 17 '06: Department of Homeland Security funding and grants to help protect and prepare communities for national and natural disasters are also needed by educational institutions to help research, preparedness and coordination with federal, state and local resources. Bangor Daily News in Maine reported last week that some school districts in the state have been given DHS grants - money that will be used in surveillance and preparedness according to the guidelines in the grant reward.
December 28 '06: The Associated Press has reported that government officials in South Carolina are working with the state's nursing homes to develop effective evacuation plans and storm preparedness in the event a large hurricane like Rita or Katrina were to hit. Nursing home care givers have said they need help with evacuation plans to effectively help the elderly patients.
November 28 '06: Two communities in Mississippi and Massachusetts are developing tracking technologies to help them protect and prepare although the goals of the tracking are very different. In Mississippi, researchers at the state's University are working to develop a tracking system to help protect inland waterways. In Massachusetts, health officials are helping community members learn to use elderly patient tracking technology.
August 7 '05: A new wireless internet network has been established in eastern Oregon to help local law enforcement and first responders in the area protect the large stockpiles of chemical weapons being stored there. Nerve and Mustard gas, along with 220,604 munitions and 7.4 million pounds chemical weapons are being kept in Hermiston and Umatilla, Oregon. The weapons are slated to be incinerated starting this summer but in the meantime, worries that an attack on the depots could send deadly nerve gas clouds into neighboring communities has encouraged the local governments to invest in creating a wireless internet communications system which connects community officials and first responders over an area of 600 square-miles.
January 27 '05: Truck drivers are the life-blood of the nation and now they can also be the eyes. According to CNN, a Virginia-based trucking company is training its drivers to help in the war on terror. The all-volunteer program called "Highway Watch" was started in 1998 by the American Trucking Associations and now is funded by money from the Department of Homeland Security.