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G-1 APPENDIX G SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS, CASE STUDY 1 INTRODUCTION 1.1 Institutional Framework A number of public and private stakeholders alike in the The institutional framework underlying information shar- San Antonio metropolitan area play an active role in traffic ing among public safety agencies and transportation agencies incident management (TIM) activities, including TxDOT, San in the San Antonio metropolitan area is the result of the Cor- Antonio Police Department (San Antonio PD), San Antonio ridor Management Team (CMT) and joint planning, joint Fire Department (San Antonio FD), San Antonio Emergency training, and co-location of transportation and law enforce- Medical Services (San Antonio EMS), and towing and recov- ment in the TransGuide Operations Center. Each of these ele- ery service providers. The efforts of these responders have ments is described below. been greatly enhanced through information sharing, espe- cially between public safety agencies and transportation agen- cies, both in the context of planning and operational activities. 1.1.1 Corridor Management Team Initiatives enhancing information sharing in the context of TIM in the San Antonio metropolitan area include the devel- The CMT, chaired by the TxDOT District Traffic Engineer, opment of sound institutional structures, joint planning and was originally conceived in the 1960s. Increased importance operations, and joint-procurement and operation of commu- was placed on the CMT as it was identified as an effective nication and data systems. Discussed in this section are the mechanism for fostering communication and coordination institutional structures, roles, and responsibilities of TxDOT, among responders when TxDOT and San Antonio PD began San Antonio PD, San Antonio FD, and San Antonio EMS as to more aggressively manage traffic incidents in the 1990s. they relate to TIM. The CMT consists of representatives from the Metropolitan The points of contact for this site visit were as follows: Transit Authority, San Antonio Public Works Department, Alamo Dome, San Antonio PD, Bexar County Sheriff's Department, EMS, towing and recovery service providers, Patrick L. Irwin, P.E. and county health agencies. Director of Transportation Operations The sole purpose for the CMT and its meetings is to pro- TxDOT vide an unofficial and informal platform to discuss traffic San Antonio District operations. Critical to the success of the CMT is that turf 3500 N.W. Loop 410 issues are set aside and participants are provided the oppor- San Antonio, Texas 78229 tunity to speak freely without feeling intimidated. The CMT 201.731.5249 (voice) meets each month to discuss, among other things, 201.731.5310 (fax) Current traffic hot spots and potential mitigation Brian G. Fariello strategies, Operational strategies during construction activities, Traffic Management Engineer Potential traffic impacts of upcoming special events and TxDOT potential response strategies, and San Antonio District Operational performance during major incidents that 3500 N.W. Loop 410 recently occurred. San Antonio, Texas 78229 201.731.5247 (voice) 201.731.5310 (fax) 1.1.2 Joint Planning Activities Captain Tom Polonis Under the leadership of the San Antonio/Bexar County San Antonio PD Metropolitan Planning Organization, a regional incident man- 7461 Callaghan Road agement plan was developed in May 2002 to enhance an San Antonio, Texas 78229 already accomplished incident management program. The 210.207.2384 (voice) plan is intended to serve as a foundation to ensure that the 210.207.2426 (fax) knowledge and relationships previously developed are carried

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G-2 on and that the goals and objectives of detecting, responding 1.2.1 TxDOT to, investigating, and clearing incidents quickly and safely are maintained (1). The plan included strategies to improve TxDOT provides numerous support functions related to response, site management, and clearance. managing traffic incidents, including freeway management, traveler information dissemination, congestion management, and operations of courtesy patrols. Each of these functions is 1.1.3 Joint Training Activities an element of TransGuide, TxDOT's "Smart Highway" proj- ect for the San Antonio metropolitan district. TransGuide Join training activities have strengthened the institutional objectives include framework and operational capabilities of incident respon- ders in the San Antonio metropolitan area. Three varieties Improve traveler safety on San Antonio's freeway system, of training activities have been employed: mock incidents, Improve response by police and emergency services tabletop exercises, and classroom workshops that are taught personnel and equipment in (1) treating and transport- by outside consultants. Each of these training activities is ing injured people to hospitals and (2) assessing and structured in a manner to encourage participation by each clearing traffic incidents, and responder. Reduce the traffic congestion delay experienced by free- way travelers. Originally implemented in the mid-1990s, TransGuide 1.1.4 TransGuide Operations Center Co-Location had many of its functions enhanced through the San Antonio The TransGuide Operation Center has been specifically Metropolitan Model Deployment Initiative (MMDI). Under designed to provide a central point of coordination in the leadership of TxDOT, the San Antonio metropolitan responding to emergencies for TxDOT and San Antonio PD. region was selected in 1997 as one of four federally funded, Co-location has strengthened existing relationships of the national MMDI projects that focused on aggressive deploy- two agencies from two perspectives. First, it provided the ment of regionwide intelligent transportation systems (ITS). opportunity to foster coalition through cooperative develop- The system has since been expanded to cover 73 miles of free- ment of operational requirements and deployment of com- way in the San Antonio metropolitan area (2). The Trans- munication and data systems that support incident manage- Guide Operations Center is operated 20 hours a day (4:00 a.m. ment functions. Second, the agencies have been able to work until 12:00 a.m.) usually and 24 hours a day during special side by side during major and minor incidents, which has events, emergencies, major incidents, and adverse weather ultimately resulted in stronger working relationships. Further conditions (such as flooding or icing). centralization of San Antonio PD and TxDOT dispatch func- Also critical to TxDOT's incident management functions tions in the TOC lends itself to synergy and optimization in is the incident detection system that is composed of three pri- responding to incidents. mary components: loop detectors that are implemented along The relationship between the city of San Antonio and the freeway to collect traffic data, a central processing sys- TxDOT has been further strengthened by the San Antonio tem, and a set of predefined scenarios. Data collected by the PD co-location in the center in that the city of San Antonio loop detectors are communicated to the TransGuide Opera- has worked with TxDOT to implement a back-up public tions Center, where they are processed to identify abnormal- safety answering point (PSAP) in the same facility that ities in traffic flow. If possible, the abnormality that has been houses the TransGuide Operations Center. An interface detected is verified with closed-circuit television (CCTV). If with the City Hall has also provided a foundation for it is determined that there is an incident, various predeter- information sharing with other responders such as San mined scenarios can be implemented to control dynamic mes- Antonio FD, or those whose operational responsibilities sage signs (DMSs) and lane control signals (LCSs), and advi- might be affected by traffic incidents and other transporta- sories can be posted on the TransGuide website. tion emergencies. The TransGuide traveler information website provides a variety of information: 1.2 Roles and Responsibilities Current Conditions Map--Provides current traffic conditions, with congestion levels indicated by average Outlined below are the diverse roles and responsibilities of speeds, on San Antonio's freeways. the primary public-sector entities that respond to traffic inci- Incident Map--Combines a traffic conditions map with dents in the San Antonio metropolitan area. It is important to icons representing incidents that have been reported to note that in the state of Texas, local law enforcement agen- the San Antonio PD and TxDOT. cies are responsible for responding to traffic incidents that Incident Data--Provide a textual description of all occur on the freeways within the city limits. active incidents in the San Antonio metropolitan area.

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G-3 Lane Closure Map--Combines the traffic conditions management in managing traffic incidents. The operations of the main map with icons representing scheduled and units include the following: emergency lane closures throughout the city. Lane Closure Data--List all scheduled and emergency Fire Fighting Division--Provides fire protection and lane closures in the San Antonio metropolitan area. medical first responder service from 48 different fire sta- Equipment Status--Provides status of TransGuide tions in the San Antonio metropolitan area. The Fire equipment, such as messages being displayed on mes- Fighting Division operates 15 first responder squads in sage signs around town and camera images (3). fire stations designated as double companies (including both a pumper-truck and a truck). Traveler information functions also include the operation Hazardous Materials Response Team (HMRT)-- of a low-powered television station that is used to dissemi- Provides specially trained personnel at the site of a haz- nate CCTV images to the local media. CCTVs are spaced at ardous materials release who can perform the proper cor- 1-mile intervals throughout the freeway system. The CCTV rective actions to end the threat of a release or potential system was also designed to provide other responders with release of hazardous materials. The HMRT is also the video surveillance to help support response activities. primary response arm of the Weapons of Mass Destruc- TxDOT also operates courtesy patrols during peak peri- tion Domestic Terrorism Program. Members are trained ods. These patrols are dispatched from the TransGuide Oper- to identify hazardous materials agents, assist in the col- ations Center by both TxDOT and San Antonio PD, and their lection of samples, and supervise mass decontamination duties typically include operations performed by the Fire Suppression Division. San Antonio EMS--Provides advanced life support at the incident scene and transports patients to appropriate Removing debris, medical facilities. Medical control is also provided to Assisting motorists with broken-down vehicles, San Antonio EMS by physicians via voice communica- Assisting San Antonio PD with traffic management, and tion on a 24-hour basis (4). Helping to move and operate TxDOT equipment. The San Antonio FD is responsible for determining-- through information provided by either the person placing 1.2.2 San Antonio PD the emergency call or another responder--whether HMRT needs to be dispatched along with responders from the fire- As mentioned previously, local police agencies in the state fighting division. As a result, at times it is necessary to dis- of Texas are responsible for responding to traffic incidents patch both HMRT and the firefighting division because it is that occur on freeways in the metropolitan areas. To support not always possible to determine whether an incident involves this effort, San Antonio PD has 210 officers assigned to the hazardous materials. traffic operations unit. Officers in this unit are responsible for managing traffic, conducting crash investigations, and provid- ing assistance with containment of hazardous materials 1.3 Site Contributors spills. The traffic operations unit also actively participates in traffic management during special events. Pat Irwin, Director of Transportation Operations, TxDOT, Officers in the traffic operations unit are dispatched from San Antonio District, hosted the site visit to the TransGuide one of the two consoles that San Antonio PD has located operation center along with Captain Tom Polonis of the San within the TransGuide Operations Center. In addition, from Antonio PD. Additionally, Brian G. Fariello, Traffic Man- its position within the TransGuide Operations Center, San agement Engineer, TxDOT, San Antonio District, hosted a Antonio PD is able to provide updated incident information, tour of the TransGuide operation center that provided an including traffic conditions and lane closures, and interface opportunity to observe operations. with TxDOT's traveler information system. 2 INFORMATION-SHARING METHODS 1.2.3 San Antonio FD Incident responders in San Antonio have a long history of San Antonio FD also plays a critical role in managing traf- cooperatively managing traffic incidents. Underpinning these fic incidents in the San Antonio metropolitan area. Primary activities has been the ability to communicate and exchange roles at the incident scene include fire protection and medical information from both a planning and operational perspec- treatment that are provided by first responders. Special opera- tive. Described below are methods employed by the various tions units within the department, each with unique apparatus incident responders in the San Antonio metropolitan area to and response equipment, also play a critical role in incident share operational information.

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G-4 2.1 Face-to-Face 2.4 Other Media and Advanced Methods To support incident management operations, TxDOT and The TxDOT-operated TransGuide system includes CCTVs San Antonio PD have multiple means of supporting voice that are implemented on 73 miles of freeway throughout the communication. By virtue of their co-location in the Trans- metropolitan area. Although TxDOT maintains control of the Guide Operations Center, operations personnel are able to cameras, video images are disseminated to the media and to communicate face-to-face to support incident management the San Antonio City Hall via the City of San Antonio Wide operations. This has proven very useful in enhancing opera- Area Network (WAN). tions and fostering coordination and cooperation. The direct video connection serves two purposes. First, it enables live video to be broadcast to the public via the City Hall informational television channel. Second, the video sig- 2.2 Remote Voice nal is routed from City Hall to other incident responders, including City of San Antonio Public Works Department, San The San Antonio PD dispatcher located in the TransGuide Antonio PD, San Antonio FD dispatch center, City Council Operations Center, using one of two consoles, is also able to office, and the city's emergency operations center, which is dispatch TxDOT courtesy patrols using the San Antonio PD also located in the same building as TransGuide. Plans to radio system. Each courtesy patrol is equipped with a San upgrade the system include an external video switch that Antonio PD mobile radio unit. Having the San Antonio PD enables external users to view images that they select, as radio in the courtesy patrol also enables TxDOT to commu- opposed to limiting images to those pre-selected by TxDOT. nicate with San Antonio PD officers responding to incidents In addition, TransGuide shares video with other emer- while in the field. gency responders, the local media, and the public by broad- The city of San Antonio, in cooperation with Bexar County, casting live video over a 1,000-watt, low-power television is in the process of deploying a new trunked-radio system (LPTV) system (5). This system provides up to four views to support public safety operations throughout the city and that are selected by the TransGuide operations staff. This county. Once implemented, this system will provide a com- system can also be used by incident responders to assist in mon frequency for San Antonio PD, San Antonio FD, and determining what equipment and vehicles are the most appro- TxDOT to communicate in the field while managing traffic priate for the response. incidents. 2.3 Text Transfer 3 REFERENCES San Antonio PD is able to provide TxDOT with incident 1. San Antonio Incident Management Plan. Prepared for the San data through an interface between San Antonio PD's CAD Antonio/Bexar County Metropolitan Planning Organization. Prepared by PB Farradyne, Klotz Associates, and Ximenes & system and the TransGuide traveller information system. Associates. May 2002. This interface enables incidents occurring on surface streets 2. and the freeway network alike to be entered by San Antonio 3. PD and displayed on the TransGuide website. However, this 4. system does not provide TxDOT with the ability to modify 5. Fariello, Brian G., TransGuide Update--After Model Deploy- incidents generated by San Antonio PD. This data interface ment. was implemented during the initial phase of TransGuide. update.html