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Question 1: Stakeholders and their roles and objectives

The incident management activities require the expertise and skills of various agencies (stakeholders) and disciplines. The following are the main stakeholders in this case study as well as their roles and objectives.

The Police Station Department (PSD) (Law Enforcement)

The PSD is one of the main agencies that are involved in incident management activities. Generally, their involvement is dictated by the jurisdiction in which the incident occurs. The main roles and objectives of Police Station Department are:

  • Helping in incident detection by establishing a police station coordinator (PSC) who makes the formal communication with other agencies.

  • Securing the scene of incident. Once it has been verified that there is an incident, the police station coordinator determines the number of officer and vehicles to deploy to the scene of incident and dispatches them so that they can secure the area.

  • He makes formal communication with other agencies so that they can as well dispatch their response teams.

  • Helps the disabled motorists.

  • Offers first aid to injured people until help from hospital emergency department arrives.

  • Directing traffic.

  • The agency conducts accident investigations and records the relevant information in database.

  • The agency serves as the incident commander.

  • Safeguards personnel property

  • Control scene clearance.

Fire and Rescue Department

The fire and rescue services are offered by local fire departments together with the surrounding fire departments through mutual aid agreements. In majority of jurisdictions, the fire department is the most important emergency response agency for hazardous spills. Unlike police, who functions individually for most duties, fire departments work under a highly organized team structure with close supervision of a commanding officer. The main roles and objectives of fire and rescue agency in an incident management include:

  • Once the fire station department receives information about an incident, it establishes a fire station coordinator who makes formal communication with other stakeholders.

  • Establishes the number of firemen, trucks and equipment required in the scene of incident and dispatched them.

  • Protect the scene of incident

  • Offer assistance in traffic control

  • Offer emergency medical care together with hospital emergency department

  • Offer initial HAZMAT response and repression

  • Fire suppression

  • Rescuing crash victims from wrecked vehicles

  • Rescuing victims of the accident from contaminated surroundings

  • Arranging transportation for the injured persons

  • In coordination with police department, serve as incident commander

  • Assisting the police in incident clearing.

  • Collects and records the relevant information in CCMS.

Emergency Medical Services (EMS)

The most important roles of EMS are the triage, treatment as well as transportation of crash victims. Typical incident management responsibilities and roles played by EMS comprise of:

  • Offering advanced tragedy remedial care

  • Determining the destination and transportation requirements for the crash victims

  • Coordinating evacuation with fire department, police department and ambulance or airlift

  • Serving as incident commander for medical emergencies

  • Determining the most probable cause of injuries for the trauma center

  • Removing medical waste from the scene of accident.

Just like the police department and fire department, EMS has a defined set of priorities. Their main focus is on offering patient care, crash victim rescue as well as making sure their personnel is safe.

Transportation Agencies (TA)

Transportation agency is mainly responsible for the general planning and implementation of incident management programs. Their main roles include:

  • Assisting in incident detection and verification

  • Initiating traffic management plans on incident impacted facilities

  • Protection of scenes of accident

  • Offering traffic control

  • Offering first aid to victims

  • Helping motorist with disabled vehicles

  • Offer motorist information

  • Determining incident clearance and roadway repair needs

  • Establishing and operating alternate routes

  • Coordinating clearance and repair resources

  • Repairing transportation infrastructure

Towing and Recovery Service Providers (TARSP)

Roles include:

  • Removing vehicles from scene of accident

  • Protecting victim’s property and vehicles

  • Removing debris from the highway

  • Offering transport for the uninjured vehicle occupants

  • Can act as incident commander for recovery operations.

Diagram showing the roles and responsibilities


Question 2: Software development methodology

Road accident is globally regarded as a significant issue that can be minimized by developing suitable speed monitoring system. The methodology for developing such a system involved developing a tentative system to produce random speed data, which represents vehicle speed on the road and developing software to check and run the speed information wirelessly. A wireless sensor fixed with a mechanical wheel computes the acceleration pulsation of the system, which is equated to the speed of vehicle and the data is transmitted wirelessly to a computer (Althauser, 1998). A software will be developed using “Java Socket programming codes” that can be able to change the vibration data into corresponding speed data and show the information in a Graphical User Interface (GUI). If the detected speed goes beyond a certain set limit, the data is automatically saved in a central database as an electronic report for taking extra measures. The system should also be able to continuously update itself and store regular vehicle speeds with time as well as the over-speeding conditions showing the speeding vehicle number, speed details, and time. The aim of the system and the software is to help to efficiently, automatically and intelligently monitor vehicle speed (Papageorgiou, 1983).

The proposed system will regularly track vehicles in real time and update the central database. The system will promptly pop up warning messages when the driver tries to over-speed so that further action can be taken. The analyzed data can be used as evidence in case of traffic case prosecution. The system will allow for easy tracking of drivers with a tendency of over-speeding. It will make use of the potential of Global Positioning System (GPS), Global Positioning Satellites and Global System for Mobile communications (GSM) Technology in delivering its services (Walker et. Al. 1986).

The proposed system can be broken down into two parts; Data Processing Unit (DPU) and Data Repository Unit (DRU). DPU as a complete electronic gadget will be mounted in a vehicle. DPU comprises of GPS, MIC (Microcontroller chip) and GSM Modem. Using the satellite dishes, the GPS will help in tracking the speed of vehicle and its location (Barton-Aschman Associates, Inc. 1993). The data from GPS is sent to GSM modem by the help of the MIC fixed in the DPU. The GSM modem in DPU will then send the data as SMS through GSM network to DRU. DRU comprises of GSM modem, SMS gateway and Central Database. The GSM in DRU is used for receiving and analyzing data sent from DPU. The received data will be sent to a central database for repository through SMS gateway. The central database is built with ability to analyze data and provide user tailored reports (Traffic Detector Handbook, 1991). The following diagram shows how the new system will be working.


Question 3: swim lane for roles and decisions




















TX 283N & TX 432Y

Overspeeding around a corner

Bumps to be mounted around that area

Question 4: spreadsheet for data storage

Question 5: Weaknesses of the current CCMS

The first weakness of the current CCMS is that there is no efficient coordination between the police station, fire station and the hospital emergency department. This is because the systems in these agencies are standalone and hence they do not share the information. To overcome this challenge, there is need to have a central database that can be accessed by all the three agencies as proposed in the new system. This will ensure that each department receives relevant information on time and acts accordingly. This means that when the information is updated, all the agencies can access the updates.

Secondly, the system is not automatic and has to be fed with data. Sometimes, the one feeding the data could make mistakes and this means that the information will be misleading the other agencies. To curb this shortcoming, the system needs to be automated as proposed in the new system. An automatic system collects data, analyzes it and sends accurate reports to all the agencies and hence removes any human error (Richardson and Smith, 1995).

Thirdly, a standalone system cannot monitor or tell the magnitude of the accident or the number of firemen and police needed at the scene. Hence, it may lead to delays due to shortage of resources such as fire trucks, firemen and policemen. This may lead to more deaths especially when the accident is fatal. To overcome this challenge, a new system should be able to show the location of accident, number of vehicles involved, alternative route to the scene, and whether there are spillages of hazardous materials. The system should also be able to send this information spontaneously to all the agencies (TRAC Research Review, 1994).

Question 6: How the use of social media can help in improving the existing system

Social media has become so popular that almost each organization is using it to market its products and services and also get feedback from customers about the quality of its products and services. It has also become a major platform for spreading news. Thus, if these agencies have social media accounts which are integrated into the system, they can be able to get information about any incident occurrence at a considerably short period of time. A person in a scene of accident may not be having emergency phone numbers but may be able to access the police through their social media account.

According to the Red Cross survey, most people nowadays use social media platforms to report emergencies or call for help and expect the government agencies to be actively engaged in use of technology. Social media, Web 2.0 or Web-enabled technologies offer a way through which an emergency management personnel can solve data as well as other types of interoperability and communication issues. “Social media tools allow emergency managers to disseminate information to wider audiences, interact with the public, monitor social media networks to get a better sense of what’s happening on the ground during a crisis, get better situational awareness, and improve collaboration for sharing information during an emergency and sharing of best practices and lessons learned”( Ritchie and Prosser, 1991).


Althauser, J. 1998, State of Washington Incident Response Team Northwest Region Guidelines.

B. van Arem 2007. Cooperative vehicle-infrastructure systems: An intelligent way forward. Technical Report 2007-D-R0158/B, Verkeer en Vervoer, TNO, Delft, The Netherlands. In Dutch.

Barton-Aschman Associates, Inc. 1993 “Incident Detection and Response System in North Dallas County,” prepared for the Texas Department of Transportation.

Developing Freeway and Incident Management Systems Using the National ITS Architecture, US Department of Transportation, Intelligent transportation System Joint Program Office, August 1998.

Papageorgiou M. 1983. Applications of Automatic Control Concepts to Traffic Flow Modeling and Control. Lecture Notes in Control and Information Sciences. Springer-Verlag, Berlin, Germany.

Richardson M. J. and Smith D. 1995. Design of the driver interface for autonomous intelligent cruise control. In Proceedings of the IEE Colloquium on Design of the Driver Interface, pages 7/1–7/4, London, England, 1995.

Ritchie S.G. and Prosser. N. A. 1991. Real-time expert system approach to freeway incident management. Transportation Research Record, (1320):7–16, 1991.

TRAC Research Review, 1994. “Database will Improve Management of Incident Response Data,” Washington State Transportation Center, University of Washington.

Traffic Detector Handbook, 1991. Second Edition, Institute of Transportation Engineers. Washington, DC.

Varaiya P. and Shladover S. E. 1991. Sketch of an IVHS systems architecture. In Vehicle Navigation and Information Systems, pages 909–922, Dearborn, Michigan.

Walker, J., Alicandri, E., Sedney, C., and Roberts, K. 1986. “In-vehicle Navigation Devices: Effects on the Safety of Driver Performance,” Report number FHWA-RD-90-053. US Department of Transportation, Washington, DC.

Zhang H. and Ritchie S.G. 1994. Real-time decision-support system for freeway management and control. Journal of Computing in Civil Engineering, 8(1):35–51.