Smartphone-based technology that connects agencies with private contractors during snow emergencies

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Smartphone-based technology that connects agencies with private contractors allowing them to assist during snow emergencies
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Team Members EastBanc Technologies
Point of Contact Peter Shashkin
Participating Municipalities Montgomery County, MD (Department of Transportation, Highway Services)
Status Launched
Website
Download

Description

Based on an Uber-like concept, this technology connects local governments and private contractors to help fight snow storm emergencies on short notice. Throughout the process, agencies maintain full command and control capabilities, and reporting transparency for contractors.

Challenges

In the United States alone, snow emergencies take an average of 900 lives per year. Additionally, a single snow storm can cost the US economy up to $1 billion. And it's during major snowstorms, when local governments never have sufficient resources for snow removal directly affecting the time required to bring cities back to life.

Solutions

Major Requirements

  • Current State: Phase I of this project is currently implemented in Montgomery County, MD. Phase II is currently under development.
  • Next Steps: Though originally developed as a solution specific for Montgomery County, MD, we'd like to determine the applicability of the technology to other urban areas in the US.

Performance Targets

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) Measurement Methods
  1. Reduced the average time frame between the identification of the snow removal need and snow removal completion
  2. Decreased average snow plow idle time
  3. Increased resource management efficiency while reducing snow cleanup time and fuel usage

All events (including vehicle positioning) are logged electronically and timestamped. The information mentioned above is accessible via standard business intelligence tools.

Standards, Replicability, Scalability, and Sustainability

  • Requires interoperable GIS systems for route integration
  • Single sign-in for eligible user authentication (if required)
  • Envisioned as a commercial product, this system was built on a multi-tenant, SaaS cloud infrastructure that enables a “hockey stick” economy of scale for SaaS-style applications.
  • Initially, the product will be targeted at densely populated areas with unpredictable snow weather.

Cybersecurity and Privacy

Impacts

  • Ability to easily connect private contactors and government during snow storms, increasing business opportunities for contractors
  • Cost reduction by eliminating investments in static fleets, off-season employee idling and equipment
  • Faster turnaround time bringing cities back to normality

Demonstration/Deployment

Demonstration will include simulated snow emergency response including:

  • Smartphone emulator representing employee/snow plow operator
  • Smartphone emulator representing contractor/snow plow operator
  • iPad application representing supervisor dispatching snow plow operators

We will showcase how these roles interact and collaborate to efficiently clear a residential neighborhood in Montgomery County.