The pilot project for the nation’s first Disaster and Emergency Warning Network (DEWN) was launched yesterday by Dialog GSM and the Ministry of Public Security, Law and Order. SMS and Location Based Technologies have been used to provide this cost effective and reliable mass alert system.
“The development of an effective disaster and emergency warning system by innovatively leveraging of the key resources we have at hand was foremost in our minds over the past months,” Dialog GSM CEO Dr. Hans Wijayasuriya said.
DEWN capitalizes on the inherent strengths of GSM technology and the widespread access provided by GSM networks, to create the specialised Disaster Alert delivery and response system.
Its aims to provide a multi-model mass alert system to give advance warnings to key stakeholders in disaster management and the general public about life threatening disasters.
“We are also truly proud and appreciative of the innovations created by our partners in this project who are Microimage and the Dialog-UoM Research facility,” Dr. Wijayasuriya added.
The DEWN pilot features the deployment of the system at the main police stations in Rathnapura and Galle and other key disaster management stakeholders in the surrounding areas. The 118th centre in Colombo will function as the command centre for the pilot project.
The system will be tested and modified over the next few months leading to final deployment on a national basis.
“This is a great example of in depth collaborative research and development capabilities of multiple parties brought together to deliver a platform of national importance utilizing 100% local talent,” Microimage CEO Harsha Purasinghe said.
DEWN, which is capable of providing alerts in both Sinhala and Tamil, encompasses multiple areas of special GSM handset applications and proto-type wireless alerting devices for domestic and special use.