Lte | 2021-11-23

POCSTARS Push-to-talk Solution Empowers Cross-province Disaster Relief Operation

Source: The Critical Communications Review | Gert Jan Wolf editor

Late in July, history record torrential rain hit China’s Henan province. The flood posed a great threat to the health and safety of local people in the provincial capital Zhengzhou metropolitan area and rural areas across the province.

After the Ministry of Emergency Management called for cross-region flood relief reinforcement, the Fire and Rescue Department of Hunan province responded quickly by dispatching a professional water rescue team to Zhengzhou city. The team brought with them a POCSTARS push-to-talk and dispatching system, which ensured on-demand instant group communications during their searching and draining missions.

The feature-rich POCSTARS system helped them quickly gather and respond at critical moments, and successfully complete the draining mission. The PoC (Push-to-talk over Cellular) and dispatching system demonstrated three major advantages as follows.

  1. Fast to deploy and configure: In the face of flood, time is life. Hunan Fire and Rescue quickly mobilized the team and activated the POCSTARS system. The feature scheduling by organizational levels enabled flexible group setup according to priorities and managerial levels.
  2. Cross-team collaboration: In the flooded areas, especially pivotal places, there were multiple teams. POCSTARS system’s innovative geo-group feature allowed members of different units to form a talk group automatically and receive unified dispatching and commanding when they entered a designated area. After arriving in Zhengzhou, Hunan team immediately connected with the local government and received tasks.
  3. Accurate dispatching: Flood rescue mission is volatile and dangerous; therefore, the accuracy of dispatching and commanding is critical. POCSTARS visualized dispatch platform not only supports PTT voice calls, but also supports real-time positioning, multimedia messaging, and video streaming, which makes visualized dispatch a reality. This helps dispatchers to learn about the rescue environment more intuitively and completely, facilitating accurate dispatching decisions.

The POCSTARS dispatch system adopted by Hunan Fire and Rescue, well proven during the mission, was highly recognized by the Ministry of Emergency Management. Besides Hunan province, POCSTARS visualized dispatch platform is widely used by firefighting corps in provinces and cities such as Hubei, Liaoning, Beijing, and Chongqing.