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Situation awareness oriented user interface design for fire emergency response

Lili Yang, PhD, MSc, BSc, FBCS, CITP, Raj Prasanna, PhD candidate, Malcolm King, PhD, MA, FIMA, CMath

Abstract


Emergency response management demands certain characteristics of the individuals involved. They need to act decisively on often little or incomplete information within tight time schedules, or, sometimes, with too much data from which it is difficult to extract key information. Procuring the right information at the right time, in the right format, and to get it to the right people is a challenge in any emergency response management system design; especially, as poor designs can lead to response systems that are not used, are ineffective, and in some cases dangerous to the emergency personnel. This article explores how situation awareness (SA) oriented design can be used for on-site emergency response system development. The end-user requirements are identified through extensive interviews with fire fighters and observations of fire emergency response training simulations. These requirements are calculated against the identified responsibilities of the core members in the first responder hierarchy. The on-site dynamic information which could be presented to emergency personnel is examined through the use of three SA levels to meet the various requirements of the first response party. Finally, an interface prototype of an information system for fire and rescue services is presented to illustrate the methods proposed in the article. Although our focus was on structural fire and fire fighters, the interface design for an onsite emergency response system proposed here is applicable for other emergency response situations as well, due to standard operating procedures.

Keywords


emergency response; fire fighter; information requirement; situation awareness oriented design; graphic user interface

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References


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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5055/jem.2009.0005

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