T. Reznik, J. Kozel, V. Kaplan, Z. Stachon

Masaryk University, Institute of Geography, Laboratory on Geoinformatics and Cartography


Risk management is the process of measuring or assessing risk and developing strategies how to manage it. Traditional risk management focuses on risks stemming from physical or legal causes (e.g. natural disasters or fires, accidents, deaths, and lawsuits). However, there is also a geoinformatical point of view and this approach is based on map production and map use to simplify decision support in risk management.

Geoinformatics could be helpful to many different tasks of risk management. The most important ways of use are: map support for early warning and map support for the disaster itself. This paper is not focused on description of different kinds of Web services as they are already widely known. Instead of this, it focuses on possibilities of Web services integration and their meaningful use in daily life of rescue workers.

The case study of this research is a transport of dangerous load. The case study focuses on the development of a system that provides all necessary functionality for prevention of a dangerous load disaster and functionality for emergency in case of this disaster. This system composes of two subsystems: terrain and office. The terrain subsystem is in the vehicle that transports dangerous load. It contains sensor equipments (including transport and hit sensors that are OGC Open Geospatial Consortium compliant) and GPS locator. The purpose of this subsystem is to identify the location of the dangerous load and to send the information about the disaster. All relevant information is wireless transferred (GPRS) to the office subsystem. GPRS is used especially due to low costs and efficiency.

The office subsystem consists of software mediator (which is responsible for receiving information from terrain subsystem and its conversion to understandable format), UMN (University of Minnesota MapServer that online combines data from mediator, local and distributed databases while using WMS and WFS), route planner (for a definition of the most effective route between appropriate emergency centre and a place of dangerous load disaster) and SMS service (for better awareness of end users crisis centre employees, mayors, etc.). Furthermore, the system uses the context cartographic visualization that is based on change of used cartographic method according to users need. For example, fire brigade, emergency or police have different users need.

So far, several tests for assurance of system functionality have been accomplished. This research has been supported by funding from Project No. MSM0021622418 called Dynamic Geovisualization in Risk Management.