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Testing Emergency Operation Centers to Help Facilitate Community Collaboration. By: Robert Burton and Tom Chiginsky Blue Water Partners Global, LLC. Fire Safety Director’s Association of Greater NY. TTX (Table Top Exercise) – Traditional Method.

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Testing Emergency Operation Centers to Help Facilitate Community Collaboration

By: Robert Burton and

Tom Chiginsky

Blue Water Partners Global, LLC

Fire Safety Director’s Association of Greater NY


TTX (Table Top Exercise) – Traditional Method

  • Often delivered via power point.
  • Participants respond on paper or type into a Word
  • document on a laptop.
  • Exercise rooms can get over crowded.
  • Regulators, external stakeholders and others may
  • have to travel.
  • We all have to be on the same schedule.
  • The AAR can take weeks or even months to be
  • delivered.
  • It’s only a learning experience for the group that is in
  • the room.
  • We often squeeze what would be a long emergency
  • situation into a one to two hour TTX.
  • Simulated scenarios are compressed which can lead to
  • some areas of a plan being ignored.
  • However, the face to face interaction is invaluable.

High-rise Groups and Key Personnel

Crisis Management


Incident Command Team

Other Key



Preparing for an emergency management exercise

  • Gather the team to discuss options
  • Send out emails
  • Make phone calls
  • Receive emails
  • Have several if not multiple meetings
  • Invite external agencies and vendors
  • Invite other stakeholders and observers
  • Schedule the event
  • Re-schedule as senior management can’t attend that day
  • More emails……
  • Map out a scenario
  • Send out the invite, again
  • Finalize the scenario and don’t forget the tea and pastries
  • And this is just preparation time
  • The cost?

An organization with a problem

  • The first LNG facility in Canada (one hour North
  • of the Maine boarder.)
  • The organization has local, regional and global
  • stakeholders.
  • Required an operating license prior to the first
  • LNG ship arriving.
  • Had six weeks to conduct an exercise program
  • Wanted dispersed on site personnel, multiple
  • agencies, stakeholders and other observers to
  • be involved.
  • The EOC holds 25 (at least 90 wanted to attend
  • each exercise.)
  • We asked the facility and the regulators if they
  • would like to see the scenarios unfold online to
  • help facilitate the large numbers that wanted to
  • participate and observe? They said yes.
  • GlobalTop was developed.

A New Virtual Evaluation Method – GlobalTop

  • Delivered securely online to anywhere in the world.
  • Rich media such as streaming news simulations for
  • all to see.
  • All participants respond in to a central and
  • controlled environment.
  • An unlimited amount of people can observe an
  • exercise.
  • It eliminates travel expense and operational
  • interruptions.
  • Regulators and observers can get a quick overview
  • at a glance.
  • The AAR is ready as soon as someone says End Ex.
  • It’s a learning experience for an unlimited amount
  • of people.
  • Scenarios can start at any time, days or even weeks
  • prior.
  • The power of video conferencing still allows for the
  • face to face communication.

Allows organization's the ability to conduct an exercise at any time, from any location and involve any number of participants

  • From an EOC as a
  • team.
  • From a hotel
  • room as an individual.
  • From your desk
  • top, while on the
  • road or from
  • anywhere your
  • connected.

Having the ability to invite our local, regional and global partners and community

  • One building or
  • location.
  • Multiple buildings
  • or locations in
  • the same city or
  • region.
  • Global locations.

GlobalTop - Overview

  • Secure web
  • browser log in.
  • Common looking and
  • functioning web site.
  • Fully customizable.
  • Can be modified during
  • an exercise.

Situational Awareness

  • Provides everyone with
  • situational awareness
  • and a common operating
  • exercise picture.
  • An exercise progress
  • bar and exercise timers
  • provide a quick
  • overview.
  • Current scenario
  • information.

Current Scenario, Injects and Responding

  • A scenario is launched
  • and teams collaborate.
  • Scenario responses are
  • placed into a response
  • form.
  • Moves/Injects are
  • introduced.
  • Additional responses
  • are placed in.

Responses and Results

  • Team or individual
  • responses are posted.
  • Responses can be seen
  • by all or by authorized
  • groups or users.
  • Results can be
  • displayed almost
  • immediately.
  • Any scoring criteria can
  • be used.


  • Images sent from
  • phones or cameras.
  • Videos sent from
  • phones or a $150 Flip.
  • VOIP audio.
  • All posted text.
  • Acts as an audit trail.

The After Action Report

  • IAAR – Immediate
  • After Action Report.
  • All data including
  • images, audio and
  • video are collated in
  • one document.
  • Allows organization to
  • display compliance and
  • state of readiness.


  • Video conferencing allows the
  • face to face interaction for up to
  • six different locations.
  • Live IM chat allows participants to
  • text backwards and forwards.
  • Telephone conferencing.
  • VOIP calls to and from a
  • simulation cell can be recorded
  • for injects and exercise reporting
  • and shared through GlobalTop.

GlobalTop – Additional Features and Options

  • Simulated video news
  • that can be pre-filmed
  • or launched during an
  • exercise.
  • VOIP calls can be
  • recorded.
  • GIS mapping and full
  • Google Earth
  • functionality to each
  • group or user.


212-812-4466 Ext 714


Thank you for listening.