Our developed product, the FireWatch, is a device which allows firefighters to receive and respond to alarm calls. As of now the firefighters have no option to immediately signal to their superior whether or not they are able to come to the fire station. This leads to the inability to plan operations ahead – the units are grouped into squads only on site causing serious delays. Furthermore some firefighters will be assigned less frequently than others, decreasing their motivation and working morale.
In case of an emergency the FireWatch enables the firefighters to respond to their commanders by simply swiping up- or downward on the screen, respectively rejecting or accepting the alarm call. The underlying back-end system keeps track of the firefighters’ positions and calculates their estimated time of arrival. Based on this information and additional parameters such as the firefighters’ operation participation frequency the system builds the squads.
The FireWatch complies with all official regulations and laws as it transmits via voice radio frequencies and not via mobile radio frequencies, which may overload and collapse on special occasions such as new years’ eve. On the one hand our system increases the overall motivation and working morale of the firefighters on a long-term basis because it ensures that every firefighter gets assigned to operations equally. On the other hand the commander’s time spent planning decreases enabling him to focus his attention on other important tasks.
The FireWatch can be extended with smartphone applications showing additional data regarding the alarm call or the operation ahead.