November 13, 2018

iDirect and Kymeta Offers Support to Verizon’s Operation Convergence Response (#OCR2018) Event

The show demonstrated how satellite communications can provide a lifeline when every second counts

If you’re a first responder then you know when there is a disaster every second that passes is crucial. You have to know where you’re going, what to expect when you get there, and how to deal with often catastrophic changes in moments. Enter the Operation Convergence Response(OCR) created by Verizon and Nokia. Held for its second year in earlier this November, this is a live-action event that simulates natural and man-made disasters and allows participants to experience them in real time while using the latest and most innovative technologies.

Verizon has been using its satellite-enabled mobile command fleet, based on iDirect technology, to provide support to major natural and man-made events since Hurricane Andrew in 1992. Whether in a densely populated urban area with damaged infrastructure, or a remote location where no infrastructure exists, these satellite-enabled mobile command vehicles provide a lifeline during emergency response operations by coordinating essential services, helping restore communities, and by allowing residents to connect with loved ones.

This year at OCR, iDirect and Kymeta team members were proud to support our longtime partner Verizon by offering our satellite technology to help first responders communicate and coordinate their responses all the way to the front line.

iDirect and partner Kymeta created a communications hub for first responders by outfitting a ATV Response vehicle with a KyWay™ terminal, which was utilized in many of the scenarios during OCR2018 and can be seen below bringing the SWAT team into the Active Shooter Scenario ensuring they had reliable communications wherever the vehicle needs to go.

The terminal’s flat panel antenna, along with an integrated iDirect satellite modem, is small enough to fit on a variety of emergency vehicles, such as patrol cars, ambulances, fire trucks and SWAT vehicles to ensure first responders have connectivity not only on scene but also while they are in transit.

Utilizing iDirect’s Comms-on-the Move satellite solution, which is reliable and available in the most remote areas, first responders were able to set up mobile hotspots wherever needed and use their existing tools like smartphones, tablets, or laptops, to communicate back to the command center, saving valuable time and resources. These technologies were certainly put to the test during the week long OCR2018 with over eight different disaster scenarios in action.

During an emergency, constant communication is key to the best possible outcome and iDirect was pleased to demonstrate how satellite technology is a viable resource throughout a disaster.

Comms-on-the-Move-enabled ATVs provide constant communication to first responders entering a disaster scene

Verizon’s Mobile Command Unit, powered by iDirect technology