beAWARE proposes an integrated solution to support forecasting, early warnings, transmission and routing of the emergency data, aggregated analysis of multimodal data and management the coordination between the first responders and the authorities. Our intention is to rely on platforms, theories and methodologies that are already used for disaster forecasting and management and add the elements that are necessary to make them working efficiently and in harm under the same objective.
The overall context for beAWARE lies in the domain of situational awareness and command and control (C2). The first phase concerns the forecast of the extreme condition and the relevant preparations. Once a disaster occurs, an initial assessment needs to be conducted as soon as possible to determine the scope, geographical distribution, and scale of the incident. Situational awareness means being able to accurately determine what has happened, what is happening now, and what will come next, all in order to plan and coordinate the most effective response possible with the resources available. This observation phase will lead to an orientation phase suggestingboth an individual as well as collective “cognition” orientation to data that is sensed and communicated. Once orientation to the data (or the lack of it) occurs then a decision is made, ultimately resulting is the final step, which is “act”. beAWARE will collect heterogeneous data from several resources such as environmental, social media, input from first responders and/or people in danger and will semantically integrate them in order to provide decision support services to the crisis management center. Towards this direction beware will combine visual, speech and text analysis techniques, content integration using semantics and multilingual report generation. The crisis management center is always striving or struggling to gain a sense of what is reality to be able to feel that he or she can make a decision that is the "best possible" given the circumstances. Then, a decision is made at the smallest deployable/operational unit or a higher level of the C2 function. Integral to the “act” step is the ability to communicate the action suggested and then monitor the action (feedback loop) in order to determine whether it resulted in the expected change to the situation. Getting the right people and resources to the right place at the right time will be the essence of the command and control aspect of the disaster response for our approach.
1st large scale pilot exercise - Flood: To support decision makers (AAWA) in the Italian Eastern Alps region during unplanned events (emergencies), in particular floods and flash floods, beAWARE will develop an environment capable of creating analysis and exploration tool that allows decision makers to track and understand events, behaviours and trends at the micro (i.e. user) or macro (crowd dynamics) scale. This will be done by using the visual analytics and decision support tools developed in the beAWARE project to integrate and analyse large scale hybrid data, and make them available for hydrological and hydraulic modelling and forecasting for risk management by using learnt patterns and information from M2M/IoT platforms to dynamically validate models.
2nd large scale pilot exercise - Fires pose a threat to humans, animals and infrastructure and can in a short time create a lot of damage and heavy negative economic consequences. The fires can be influenced by the weather as periods of dry weather increases the risk of fires in the nature, and heavy winds can cause a wide spreading in a given direction. It is also important to use forecast and warning systems in the handling of the public and influence on their behaviour to minimize risk of fire. beAWARE technologies will help in the early stages of the development of fires and support decision makers in the emer gency management system.
3rd large scale pilot exercise – Heatwave: A strong heatwave occurred during summer in a region in northern Greece. During the relative period, very high temperatures (over 40oC) occurred throughout northern Greece. The Civil Protection of Region of Central Macedonia had issued warnings regarding the heatwave. More specifically, through press releases and other ways of announcement (TV, radio, internet) the Civil Protection Organization had informed the public for various air conditioned public places that were open to general public during the day, so as to avoid the heat. beAWARE system will offer an early warning regarding the upcoming phenomenon, as well as assist all relative engaged organizations in taking the necessary measures in order to avoid past problems and address the heatwave more efficiently. Furthermore, it will assist fire department with real time local data in assessing the level of threat regarding the possibility of a forest fire.