Leveraging the Power of the Intelligent Edge and Intelligent Cloud for First Responder Occupational Health and Safety

30 Mar 2018

You and almost everyone you know carry a smart device. By 2020, some reports estimate that globally there will be approximately 20 billion smart devices in use. What’s the connection? Must be the voice communications, right? Or perhaps it’s the real-time internet access that we crave. Many of us already rely on smart devices for social interaction, connectivity, and business intelligence. These days, you and all the friends in your social media networks want to be the first to share a point of interest, or to be alerted when Johnny proposed to Jane, or when a new Internet meme hits. We are programmed to crave real-time intelligence in our personal lives and this need is actively moving into our business and professional lives.

With all of this real-time information, why should we have to wait 20 years for continuous occupational health and wellness data for our own bodies? Why aren’t we using our smart device, fusion of IoT sensors/cyber physical Systems, and smart-algorithm created situational awareness to detect when we have an acute, or potential chronic exposure to a hazard that may create a significant health consequence? What if we could detect it in your life NOW, instead of filling out an exposure report only to discover 10, 15, or 20 years down the road that, “Yup, I was right. That call I was on with the voodoo bad stuff really was toxic to my health.”

Mobile technologies can be leveraged to reduce and even eliminate certain chronic and acute illnesses, increase wellness and longevity of service, and improve quality of life. There are promising indications that smart devices, sensors, and AI can help make these positive changes—even if they sometimes raise your blood pressure by ringing at just the wrong time. To that end and specific to gas exposures, Blueforce has leveraged Microsoft Azure IoT stream analytics and MSA multi-gas detectors in collaboration with several “NFL City” fire and police departments to enable the Intelligent Edge through the use of BlueforceTACTICAL mobile software for real-time sensor sharing during tactical or fire operations, but also through our recently announced BlueforceEDGE Azure IoT Plugin where the same incident data may be leveraged for predictive analysis and long term exposure reporting in the Azure cloud. The combined solution concept is comprised of the following:

  • BlueforceTACTICAL deployed to mobile fire and law enforcement users, which provide real-time location, accountability, sensor fusion, and shared situational awareness.
  • BlueforceTACTICAL Plugin for MSA Altair allows multi-gas data from the Altair 4XR and 5X to be shared in real-time among responders, but also with the Azure Intelligent Cloud.
  • BlueforceEDGE Plugin for Microsoft Azure IoT pushes real-time responder data received from BlueforceTACTICAL to Azure IoT where Microsoft Stream Analytics monitor for dangers and alert those on the ground.
  • Microsoft PowerBI provides ad-hoc and standard reporting on exposures that are geospatially and date referenced.

Exposure reporting, OSHA Standards, and Department SOP’s and General Orders are important mitigation tools for occupational health and safety. The use of BlueforceTACTICAL and body-worn sensors from companies like MSA and cloud intelligence from Microsoft Azure will enable prevention, detection, and mitigation strategies to threat assessment, emergency response, and medical treatment operations arising from acute exposures. If you would like a demonstration of the concept/solution, or would like more information, call us at 866-960-0204 or send an email to info@blueforcedev.com.