Remote Access is a powerful family of products that every fire department in the nation could benefit from. 
Steve Haston, EmergMgmt Coordinator
The Remote Access (RA) application has been a tremendous benefit.  RA resides on mobile computers in the vehicles and integrates with our CAD to provide immediate access to hydrant, preplan, hazard, and utilities information before arrival.
Evanston Fire & Life Safety Services
I'm convinced that Remote Access helped keep our firefighters safe while on scene. 
Mike Wills, Capt Ret PBFD

Software Solutions


Remote Access & RA-Admin

Remote Access aids in life safety and property protection by giving fire, police, EMS and military personnel access to critical emergency response data while enroute to an incident and during pre-incident planning and training activities.  Remote Access provides access to site plans, address maps and tactical database information stored on mobile laptop computers located in frontline vehicles.  Here’s how it works:  As an incident address is transmitted through a radio or wireless system by your agency’s computer-aided dispatch (CAD) system, Remote Access will search for the incident’s location on the available map information*.  Once located and centered on the screen, access to associated site plans and tactical address data is available via large function buttons and screen controls.  Of course you can always manually enter the address if the CAD interface is not available at your agency.  Remote Access also provides search capabilities by street intersections, commonplace location names, and address ranges. *Note: Types and success of address searches is dependent on the availability and accuracy of GIS map data provided by the client.

Reach mission-critical data quickly.  Depending on the available layers and system configuration, map details can range from displaying street centerlines only, to fully exposing the individual parcels, building outlines, locations of water, storm water and sewer systems as well as the nearest fire hydrant.  For map locations that have associated tactical database information, one click (or screen-touch) takes you to a site plan of the address, revealing the locations of pertinent items such as fire department connections, electrical panel, key box, gas valve, and fire alarm panel.  You may also view photographs, video or aerial photos of the location with a single keystroke.  One click takes you to a data sheet associated with the address, which lists the presence of hazardous materials; occupancy and key-holder information; and building construction information.

Decrease response time.  Remote Access is designed to require the least number of keystrokes possible to reach critical information quickly.  Function keys can be used to navigate between map, site plan and data sheet, as an option to maneuvering using a mouse or touchpad on non-touchscreen devices.  Street names automatically appear when you begin to enter an address.  Response time is also minimized by the quickly-processed electronic file format of graphics displayed by Remote Access.



Remote Access has the ability to display selected text from the “CAD Ticket” and automatically search for and display the location of an incident based on the address files used by the client’s CAD system.  These functions are enabled through an interface between the CAD/mobile client system and RA-Mobile/CAD.

When the address of the incident is transmitted to either the CAD workstation or the MDC’s, the address search is completed without end-user action.  In cases where there is an exact match between the addresses in CAD and GIS, the address search is automatically performed and the precise location of the incident is displayed.  RA-Mobile/CAD collects the address information and centers the map at the correct incident location without user action.  In this example, an Accident With Injuries at 990 Kuhn Road is transmitted to the mobile unit.  To view the map in its entirety, the user simply touches the CAD Ticket button and the message is minimized.  Alternately, the user can chose to view the “CAD Ticket” after the address search is performed.  



RA_GPS enables a user to track oneself, either moving throughout the map or in response to an incident.  An AVL server is not required, and there are no bandwidth requirements.  During a response, the user chooses to either display the current location of the vehicle and direction to the incident, the location of the incident with an area around it and direction to the vehicle, or both the vehicle and incident together.

The control widget on the right improves the usability of the GPS functions within Remote Access. The large Indicator Arrow displays the relative direction either to the incident location from the unit position or to the unit location from the incident location.  To assist in general routing, a graphically depicted Track Line is available to the user.



Via RA_RMS an association between the premise records in Remote Access and the Department’s Records Management System (RMS) is formed through the creation of data mapping between the two sets of records.  This relationship allows Remote Access to populate the premise records with the corresponding data that was originally entered into the RMS.



RA_Pictometry is an interface between Remote Access and Pictometry’s© Electronic Field Study (EFS®).  This capability enables quick access to the Pictometry image library when an address search is completed in Remote Access by passing the latitude/longitude coordinates from Remote Access to EFS.   The user can then easily view the Pictometry oblique imagery associated with the incident location and utilize and use EFS to measure distances, heights, perimeters, lengths, widths, and area of objects within images.



At the incident scene, communicating the actual deployment and personnel and equipment is often left to be documented on sheets of paper or grease boards.  The resulting product is often difficult to read and impractical to share in real-time, either with other units staged or en-route to the scene or with a remote Command Unit…until now.

RA_TacPad enables the Incident Commander to easily make notations on a “picture” of the incident location, using symbols, text, or drawings.  Ideally suited for touch-screen notebook computers, markups are easily made using a stylus (or mouse with non-touch screen computers).  As changes are made to the Incident Command image, they are automatically saved for future review, providing a valuable visualization tool for an After Action Report.  Coupled with the communications capabilities of RA_Sync Server and Client, updated RA_TacPad images and corresponding test messages are easily shared among public safety personnel with access to network connectivity.


RA-Sync/RA-Build Manager

Many of the Remote Access applications are designed to allow communications between systems running Remote Access and RA_Admin via a TCP-IP based network.  RA_Sync is embedded into many of the Remote Access applications.  This allows the different applications to communicate with RA_Sync Manager systems and share various form of information need to keep the system updated or provide access to the latest incident information. 

Through the RA_Sync Protocol users can process updates to the Remote Access database at the record level, allowing field changes to flow through the entire system without the need to touch each system manually. RA_Sync can also process file updates when preplans, maps, photos, or videos are added or changed, providing easy processing of Remote Access data on an ongoing basis


Iowa Web design & development by Visionary Services