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New Orleans Airport (MSY)

„There was no learning curve for the Dispatchers who were experiencing the new terminal for the first time. The building had changed, but because they had their familiar Situator interface and workflows it was business as usual from day one.“ Chad Folse, Account Executive at Johnsons Controls

INCIDENT MANAGEMENT DONE EASY AT THE “BIG EASY” AIRPORT

Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport (MSY) took the lead, as the first airport in North America to install an enterprise incident management solution at its Airport Security Operation Center, back in 2010. Recently, the largest airport in Louisiana achieved another landmark, when it successfully transitioned Qognify Situator to support its new, 972,000 square foot, North Terminal facility.

THE CHALLENGE

Brian Raley, Airport Telecommunications Director/ EOC Coordinator at Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport, states: “Our Dispatchers have relied on Qognify’s Situator enterprise incident management platform for over 10 years, to deliver a real timealerting and response capacity. Normally, a move to a new terminal would have high risk of compromising continuity of security operations but with Situator as the primary platform and the execution excellence of Johnson Controls, the AVCOM operators had a smooth and immediate transition to new terminal operations with no downtime.”

Initially deployed as part of an FAA-sponsored project to ensure the airport fully complied with Transportation Security Administration (TSA) airport security regulations, Situator has been the centrepiece of the airport’s security and safety technology infrastructure for more than a decade. It serves as a coordination hub for the thousands of incidents and emergencies that require a safety, security, or medical response, across the airport each year.

THE SOLUTION

Like most Security Operations Centers the airport had silos of CCTV and security information, which made it hard for its Dispatchers to form an overall picture of what was going on at the airport. Situator provides them with a unified operating picture and the situational awareness, as well as incident response capabilities they need, to act.

Situator consolidates all the information that was previously presented in the Security Operations Center on 12 screens, into just two. It correlates data feeds from the security and safety systems (including surveillance camera network and access control) to provide Dispatchers with automated pre-defined workflows, providing them with step-by-step on-screen endto- end guidance to ensure the response is managed in-line with the airports standard operating procedure. Furthermore, Situator’s automatic escalation ensures that if a step is not completed within a set time a Supervisor is notified.

THE RESULT

The ease-of-use of Situator has resulted in 95% of an operator’s tasks being completed through the system. However, workflows pre-defined by the airport within Situator are also central to its response to major and rarely occurring incidents, which includes being the primary hurricane evacuation hub for the city of New Orleans. In the event of such a disaster the airport can extend its use of Situator to the team at its Emergency Operations Center, including airport managers and outside agencies. When the airport began to plan for the move to a new state-of-the-art terminal in November 2019, it required the transition to be seamless. The project was entrusted to Johnson Controls, the Qognify partner that originally installed Situator, and has continually worked with the airport since 2006.

Chad Folse is an Account Executive at Johnson Controls and explains: “When we switched on the new facility there was no learning curve for the Dispatchers who were experiencing the new terminal for the first time.” Folse continues: “The building had changed, but because they had their familiar Situator interface and workflows it was business as usual from day one.” Dispatchers required no additional training to maintain the new terminal from a security and operations perspective, as the integrations with the new CCTV network and access points were already within Situator. “The only noticeable change was the additions of some new sensors and a different naming convention for doors, which they were soon comfortable with,” adds Folse. This migration was made possible by the collaboration between the airport, Johnson Controls and Qognify teams. Folse states: “We had the advantage of moving from one building to another on the same site, which meant we could use the same network and in doing so make it as simple as flicking a switch to bring everything online at the new facility. Without Situator it would have been a far tougher challenge.”

Today, every procedure implemented at the Security Operations Center is done through Situator and any changes that are required can be made by the Supervisor instantly.

THE CUSTOMER

Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport is an international airport in Kenner, Jefferson Parish, Louisiana, United States. It is owned by the city of New Orleans. Armstrong International is the primary commercial airport for the New Orleans metropolitan area and southeast Louisiana.