Smarter Fire Departments = Smarter Cities

On page 18 of the Fire Department of New York’s 2009 – 2010 Strategic Plan, we find the text quoted below.

Develop a comprehensive data analysis system that will improve the efficiencies and effectiveness of a Coordinated Building Inspection and Data Analysis System (CBIDAS).  This risk-based inspection and computerized building safety program is one of the most important management initiatives in the modern history of the FDNY.   It will enable the FDNY to concentrate its fire prevention resources on the buildings and neighborhoods facing the greatest risk of serious fires.

As announced earlier this year, the Fire Department of the City of New York (FDNY) and IBM will build a “smart” system for collecting and sharing data in real-time that can prevent fires and help protect firefighters and other first responders when a fire does occur.

FDNY's new Coordinated Building Inspection and Data Analysis System (CBIDAS) will use technology found in business intelligence approaches to anticipate potential fire risks, analyze possible impacts, and improve processes such as collecting and disseminating data on building inspection, permits and violations that can reduce risks.

"This technology will allow us to shift to a risk-based inspection system that will prevent fires and improve public safety.  Combining different existing databases, and linking them with those of other city agencies such as the Department of Buildings, will dramatically improve the information available to our firefighters and result in a smarter, more productive inspection program."  – Fire Commissioner Nicholas Scoppetta

An important element of the project will be better communication, improved sharing of information and coordination of fire inspection and site/building structure information.  That sharing will take place both within the FDNY and between the FDNY and city agencies such as Department of Buildings, Department of City Planning, and Department of Environmental Protection, as well as contractors.

Learn more:  Fire Department of New York Selects IBM for Intelligent Fire Safety System (press release)