Douglas M. Anderson Emergency Operations Center

Mission: Update Emergency Operations Capabilities

In the aftermath of back-to-back hurricanes, St. Lucie County officials sought a new environment in order to overcome issues of cramped space, as well as lack of power and water during critical response times. To improve operations, officials wanted to implement advanced broadcast and emergency operations technology within the Douglas M. Anderson Emergency Operations Center (EOC) to make communications much simpler and easier to access.

Action: A Multifaceted EOC

The backbone of the EOC’s primary working environment includes four wall-mounted electric screens, four 52″ mounted Sharp LCDs and high-resolution projectors.

Two wall-mounted speakers are utilized for program audio (located at the front of the room), while a ceiling-mounted speaker system maintains voice reinforcement. A Shure gooseneck microphone is installed at a custom lectern. Eight Shure push-to-talk microphones are housed at each of the four laptop-equipped tables, and two more reside at the EOC managers’ work area and the control area.

An RF feed supplies the TV tuners located in the equipment rack, as well as all the LCD displays around the building. This includes several conference rooms for the fire and medical training, with presentations enhanced by wall-mounted 52″ LCD Sharp displays fed from a tabletop pop up. Conference room communications are also improved by the use of Draper’s 58″ x 104″ recessed electric screens to display images fed from two 4000 ANSI lumen Panasonic projectors.

With Crestron’s 12″ touch panel and wireless WiFi panels, management of the system takes place at the control desk, located in the rear of the EOC. The control area broadcast system manages two cameras – located in the Media Briefing Room – and one camera located in the interconnected EOC. These feeds are then made available to the press at the outdoor “hitching post.”

Impact: A Community Is Ready to Respond

Today, the Douglas M. Anderson Emergency Operations Center (EOC) stands at 27,282 square feet, with accommodations that are nearly four times the size of the previous structure. Engineered to withstand up to 200 mph winds, the building is home to the county’s 911 operations, radiological, animal control, and marine safety operations.

The EOC is much more readily equipped for an immediate communications response. The displays have the capability of being fully matrixed, with the two center screens showcasing high-res images from Extron’s video cables and video quad processors. This allows county personnel the ability to have two split-screen views for multiple sources of emergency information and on-the-scene updates. In the manager and control areas, staff can quickly connect and support data through laptops.