New combined safety centre for all emergency services speeds up accident response times

Until January 2011 most of the emergency services in the Moravia-Silesia region maintained separate call centres which members of the public had to call in the event of an accident or some other incident necessitating a fast response from the emergency services.

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The new emergency response centre for the Moravia-Silesia region The new emergency response centre for the Moravia-Silesia region

Now the previously separate call centres for the emergency services (fire brigade, paramedics, state and municipal police, crisis management, military, customs and regional transport information) have been centralised into a combined emergency response centre, which co-ordinates the response of all the emergency services to an incident in the region.

The building of the new emergency call centre means that emergencies in the region, which has a population of 1.2 million people, are now dealt with in a more efficient manner and it is hoped that this will help to reduce loss of life as well as damage to property.

The new call centre is housed in a substantially rebuilt old building in the city of Ostrava, the regional capital. The new facility is capable of accepting and evaluating information from electronic property surveillance devices and electronic fire alarms and has the technology for tracking emergency vehicles.

The centre also monitors meteorological, radiation and air quality data and keeps a check on the level and flow of the region’s rivers. In a crisis situation the centre is capable of issuing mass warnings to the public.

Responding faster to emergency situations

Project manager Hynek Orsag said that the new facility had become necessary following changes to Czech law in the year 2000. The new centre was better able than the previous system to provide a co-ordinated professional response to emergency situations as representatives of all the emergency services were now present in the same room when an incoming phone call was received. “This means that not only speed has increased but the quality of decisions has improved,” Mr Orsag said.

Previously as many as four or five vehicles might have been dispatched in response to an emergency call-out. But the ability for the emergency services to talk to each other prior to decisions being taken meant that, under the new system, only two vehicles might be dispatched, if this was the most efficient solution.

Total and EU funding

The “Integrated Safety Centre of the Moravian-Silesian Region” had a total budget of EUR 27 253 735 of which the EU’s European Regional Development Fund contributed EUR 22 151 337 in the programming period 2007-2013.

Draft date