With more than 30 years combined experience in emergency management, the founders of RIPE Intel (Real-time Integrated Public Emergency Intelligence) recognised that there was a need for a fresh approach in the way emergency information is provided to the general public. RIPE Intel have created solutions that enhance access to real-time emergency information to assist in decision making.
During emergencies, access to information that is local, tailored, timely, integrated and relevant is one of the most important resources available to the public and Emergency Services Organisations (ESOs). By providing access to emergency information that considers the actual decision making requirements of the public, the risk to life and property are greatly decreased.
RIPE Intel provides a number of intelligence services focused around a near real-time, integrated national view of publicly available emergency intelligence. This intelligence is sourced from emergency services, social networking sites, essential and non-essential service providers and other relevant government agencies. Along with the empowerment of local communities to share near real-time Public Observations, RIPE Intel provides an information resource that contributes to the protection of Australian lives and reduces the impact of large-scale emergencies.
While working for several ESOs, the founders of RIPE Intel experienced some of Australia's largest and most devastating bushfires and other major incidents. They understand that best source of information during large-scale emergencies can be the general public.
This understanding is fundamental to the success of a shared responsibility for the protection of lives and property between ESOs and the public. RIPE Intel recognises we live in an information-rich global network, where information has no respect for and is not confined by boundaries, jurisdictions or policies. The fundamental foundations of ESOs tend to stifle the ability to meet today's consumer expectations relating to the provision of emergency information. It was with this understanding that the Australian Emergency Information Network was developed.
In this contemporary information age, people are notified of insignificant events, like "...a friend stepped in a puddle..." from the other side of the world, within seconds of it happening. This creates the expectation that when someone's life is threatened by an emergency incident, the information required to make timely and informed decisions should be just as readily available.
This information must be in a format that is easily consumed, with little prior understanding of the subject matter and without the need to search through hundreds of sites for it to be most useful.
Valuable emergency information is scattered throughout the web, published by ESOs and pretty much anyone with a smart phone or access to the internet. ESOs and support agencies tend only to provide information based on the risks they manage or services they deliver within their geographic area of responsibility, and generally only on their website.
ESOs tend to be regimented by accuracy of information and policies on communication which results in heavily censored information and significant delays. On the plus side, information provided by ESOs is usually well structured.
In contrast to the way ESOs provide information, the public share almost everything, on any issue, at any time, in any format. The challenge with this is that information is generally disorganised and can be extremely hard to find, which makes it almost impossible to consider in decision making.
RIPE Intel's free and paid services offer part of the solution to these challenges. RIPE Intel gathers, analyses, filters and displays emergency information that is available in the public domain (ie free to view without passwords).
With ever increasing expectations on local, tailored, timely, integrated and relevant information, the challenge is out to all agencies with a responsibility to warn or inform the public to provide better emergency information. RIPE Intel can help this requirement become a reality.