The nerve center of Miami International Airport (MIA) is its Airport Operations Center (AOC), which operates around the clock, monitoring activity, responding to safety and security incidents, disseminating information and answering requests from stakeholders throughout the airport. An essential daily task for the AOC team is incident logging, with approximately 70 detailed logs being created each day – a number that is set to rise as a result of internal process changes within the department.
As Rupen Philloura, director of terminal operations and AOC at Miami International Airport explained, “The MLS logging system was a 25-year-old custom-built application. It was familiar for our operators to use but it was unwieldy, unreliable and inefficient. With logging being such a critical and growing aspect of our day-to-day operations, we needed to upgrade to a state-of-the-art unified platform.”
The airport’s chosen platform is the Situator enterprise incident management system from Qognify, a company with solutions currently in use at airports around the world. Miami itself has already worked with the company, using its NiceVision video management system (VMS) and analytics solutions across its highly distributed video surveillance system.
The AOC now has six Situator-powered stations from which operators monitor the airport’s Honeywell EBI fire alarm and Matrix access control systems, as well as its extensive surveillance camera network. Philloura described the monitoring process as follows: “When an alert is raised, the operator must follow a strict set of procedures for that specific event. This might simply be resetting an alarm remotely or the dispatch of maintenance personnel. Incidents and subsequent actions need to be accurately documented for regulatory compliance purposes but also to help us learn and improve how we deal with incidents and events.”
The need to manually enter all details has been replaced by a dynamic form functionality within Situator. This automatically populates and logs specific information relating to that incident, saving operators’ time and ensuring every log is of a consistently high standard. “Together with the input of the operator, we are assured that the logs we generate and store are comprehensive end-to-end accounts that can be quickly and reliably searched, retrieved and reviewed,” added Philloura.
According to the airport operator, the improved logging has had a noticeable impact on business continuity and operational efficiency, as well as providing an additional layer of protection to the airport from a regulatory standpoint. With the AOC operating a three-shift pattern, it is important that changeovers can be completed swiftly and that monitoring is not interrupted. Philloura observed: “When the next shift logs on to Situator, they have instant situational awareness, there is no lag in productivity. They can see what has happened and what requires their immediate attention. During their shift, they no longer need to repeatedly log into multiple systems to access information. It is all there on the screen at their station.”
Situator has also reduced the response time to incidents such as door alarms, as well as access requests from tenants and airport employees, by automating the interaction with the Matrix system. With the old MLS system, both use cases needed to be handled manually. The airport is now evaluating using the system to help the facilities management team ensure the statutory maintenance of its extensive network of elevators and moving walkways.