GloCo Office Of Emergency Management Honored For Achievement in Geographic Information Systems

By: Follow South Jersey Staff

Photo credit: Gloucester County

CLAYTON, N.J. — The Gloucester County Office of Emergency Management (OEM) has been recognized for its innovative application of mapping and analytics technology, as well as thought leadership in the field of emergency management.

The Environmental Systems Research Institute, or Esri, presented Gloucester County Office of Emergency Management with Esri’s Special Achievement in GIS Award on July 13 at the annual Esri User Conference. Esri was recently named a global leader in location intelligence.

Freeholder Director Robert M. Damminger said in a press release that location intelligence helps responses to local emergencies.

“The Gloucester County Office of Emergency Management has demonstrated impressive work with Geographic Information Systems (GIS),” Damminger said. “This work is innovating the way we respond to emergencies. They’ve implemented several map centric solutions including our damage assessment platform.”

Joe Ward leads GIS intelligence for Gloucester County OEM in conjunction with the planning department and Gloucester County Emergency Management Division. Ward has upgraded Gloucester County’s GIS capabilities and our drone project which can assess emergencies and their impact in real-time.

This platform allows those on the frontlines to use a survey-based application, collection information regarding wide-area damage, and submit that information directly to Gloucester County’s Emergency Operations Center (EOC). From there, decision makers are able to view the impact of any specific area within the county. This is accomplished through a Dashboard viewer within the EOC. 

Freeholder Dan Christy, liaison to the Office of Emergency Management, said that GIS has added agencies in response to the current pandemic.

“The GIS intelligence allows us to safely assess the damage across our county during emergencies so we can act swiftly and respond efficiently,”  Christy said. “We have utilized GIS in our COVID response efforts as well. This technology allows us to track cases, map-out testing sites and organize our data in a visual format.”

This year’s Esri User Conference was the world’s largest, virtual GIS event. Selected from over 300,000 eligible candidates, Gloucester County OEM was one of over 180 organizations in areas such as commercial industry, defense, transportation, nonprofit work, telecommunications, and government to be honored.

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