When it comes to responding to emergencies, rescue teams need to obtain clear and concise information in as little time as possible.
Responsible for overseeing operations for 62 fire stations serving most of the Bouches-du- Rhône, France, territory, the Bouches-du- Rhône Fire and Rescue Department (SDIS 13)’s emergency response center was in need of a better way to manage key information in order to respond as quickly as possible during interventions on the ground.
SDIS 13 looked to equip its emergency response center’s control room with two video walls to facilitate decision making—one large video wall in the center’s action room to monitor ongoing interventions and operations, and a smaller video wall in its reflection room to focus on critical problems and manage crisis situations. However, installing just the video walls wouldn’t cut it for this emergency response center.
SDIS 13’s control room relies on obtaining information from a wide variety of video sources, and the department needed a video wall processing solution that could capture and display camera footage from Firewatch fire detection cameras, HD video from aerial forest surveillance cameras and Sony dome IP cameras.
Météo Plus weather maps and maps showing physical features and roadways would also be displayed on the video walls. Hundreds of internet sources, data from virtual private networks and video from remote PCs would need to be easily accessible.
Furthermore, SDIS 13 would also need to be able to access its dedicated software tools—automatic wildfire detection systems, strike team alert and dispatch, fire evaluation and monitoring, ops management, 2D/3D mapping and localization with data integration.
After evaluating several options, SDIS 13 chose to deploy Agelec’s AGCWALL video wall processors. This technology incorporates Matrox Mura MPX PCIe boards to capture and display real-time, high-quality video and data from various sources.
The SDIS 13 video walls were built with NEC 50″ X551UN displays and a custom support structure provided by Agelec. The main, large, wall includes 12 displays in a 4×3 configuration. The small wall comprises 4 displays in a 2×2 configuration.
SDIS 13 controls their video wall layouts using a customized version of Agelec’s AGCTOUCH software running on touch screen displays. Using AGCTOUCH, SDIS 13 staff can easily position, switch, and zoom in on different content using a 32″ screen to control the smaller wall and a 46″ screen for the larger one. The software also allows staff to control the video wall displays and other subsystems in the room with simple presets.
“Matrox Mura MPX input/output boards delivered universal input support, which was important given the variety of baseband and IP sources that we wanted to display on our video walls,” says Didier Margotto, SDIS 13 commander and head of the emergency response center.
“Agelec’s video wall solution with Matrox Mura MPX inside helps us monitor a growing influx of real-time video and data, so we can make informed decisions more quickly during time-critical interventions. We are very happy with the results.”