Categories: Counter Terrorism

Thames Valley Local Resilience Forum chooses Everbridge Mass Notification

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Everbridge, Inc., the global provider of critical event management and enterprise safety software applications to help keep people safe and businesses running, has announced that the Thames Valley Local Resilience Forum (TVLRF) has selected Everbridge Mass Notification to enable the rapid communication of vital information in the event of a major incident or emergency in the area.

The TVLRF was established in 2004 by the Civil Contingencies Act to provide means for those involved in emergency preparedness (including local authorities, emergency services, health and environment agencies) to work together to prepare and respond at a local level. The borders of the Local Resilience Forum (LRF) match those of Thames Valley Police and cover an area of the 2,200 square miles of Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and Milton Keynes. Part of the TVLRF’s responsibility is to share important information and manage a joint response with its partner agencies. With Everbridge underpinning its “multi-agency notification process”, the TVLRF will be able send targeted notifications to those agencies affected or involved in the response from the outset of and during an incident.

“As a publicly funded service, we are always looking at ways to optimise our processes and drive efficiency whilst ensuring that we are able to maintain an effective service to the public,” explained Ben Axelsen, TVLRF Partnership Manager. “We previously used a manual system to invoke a response to a major incident, using basic call sheets to contact the partner agencies. We also relied heavily on email which was not effective if there was an urgent need to notify key personnel out of normal business hours, especially during the night, or if they were on leave. Needless to say, it was slow, inefficient and liable to error. Whilst this has not impacted on our ability to respond to a major incident to date, the risk was something we needed to mitigate against.”

Reviewing solutions in place at its partner agencies, the TVLRF learnt that Everbridge Mass Notification was already being utilised effectively at the South Central Ambulance Service and this impacted its decision to assess and then deploy the solution itself.

Mr Axelsen continued: “Thanks to Everbridge we can now send targeted notifications with a high level of reliability, which are recognised by our agencies as being the source of truth to be trusted and acted upon. In the event that a situation is more serious, complex or has the potential to be protracted, we can initiate our command structures significantly faster than we could previously, enabling us to share situational awareness, assess the risk and manage an effective joint response.”

The TVLRF moved to the new Everbridge Mass Notification system in July 2019 initially with Thames Valley Police as the primary agency tasked with sending activations. Since its implementation, the system has already been used twice to quickly organise multi-agency teleconferences in response to the recent heat-health level 3 in July and a scaffolding collapse in Reading in early August. On both occasions, it worked very effectively. More partners will be empowered to use the system as the training is rolled out more widely.

Javier Colado, Senior Vice President of International at Everbridge, commented: “When seconds matter, a critical event management platform can automate alarms, digital signs and messages based on event type, severity and location. We are very happy to be sharing our extensive experience gained from serving the populations of entire cities and countries around the world in order to help streamline the processes and response times at TVLRF.”

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