When nine people lost their lives in a devastating bushfire on the Lower Eyre Peninsula region of South Australia on January 11th 2005, the local community decided to take control of their own public safety to better prepare themselves against future emergencies.
The state owned fire authority, Country Fire Service (CFS) commissioned an investigation called Project Phoenix which reported that a mass telephone calling system could be beneficial to broadcast warning messages to the general public on their telephones.
Residents of the Lower Eyre Peninsula formed a network of telephone alerting communities using TelcoEdge National Bushfire Alert service.
The Bushfire Alert system operates on a community basis where the communities initiate the alerts themselves providing the important early warnings by Phone, Email and SMS alerts to all registered properties associated with that community.
The Port Lincoln and North Shields communities were first to go live, quickly followed by Charlton Gully and Greenpatch districts. Bushfire Alert has now become a regular feature in many bushfire risk areas across Australia.
The CFS recommends community based phone tree systems and the National Bushfire Alert services does this but in a much improved manner in that it broadcasts the message to large numbers of telephones very quickly, thereby saving valuable time at the early stage of the fire.
The system has since been taken up across many parts of Australia.
Hundreds of millions of calls are processed on the TelcoEdge infrastrutue each year.
The alerting technology is available for government owned authorities to operate themselves on a statewide or whole of country basis. Telephone Broadcast
Any community can operate their own local alerting system quickly and easily at Bushfire Alert System
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