Traffic incident response planning


New South Wales Roads and Maritime Services (NSW RMS) conduct road building and maintenance activities, as well as monitor the safety and compliance of waterways and roads within New South Wales. NSW RMS has regional operations teams which are responsible for the implementation of safety procedures and detours when incidents occur along state roads. Previously, these teams have followed paper-based regional Incident Response Plans detailing detour routes, speed limit changes and signage to be put in place, all unique to the road section where an incident occurs. NSW RMS engaged NGIS to digitalise the existing internal Incident Response Plans used for managing traffic incidents on state roads.

Minimising risks associated with paper-based solutions

Ensuring that the teams on the ground have the latest information enables the regional operations teams to respond to incidents quickly and accurately. The use of paper-based plans creates the risk that teams are responding to incidents with outdated information or don’t have the relevant plan if the incident is situated on the edge of two regions. Additionally, there is no avenue to share the plans with third parties, such as emergency services, that provide assistance during diversions by managing traffic flow.

NGIS understand what we’re trying to do, and where we need to get to; I don’t need to spend a whole lot of time explaining our landscape. It’s about how they can help with a particular solution.

Tim Sinclair, Principal Manager, Digital Customer Experience, NSW RMS 

Saving time using a tablet-native application

NGIS and NSW RMS worked together to create a ‘like-for-like’ replacement of the paper-based Incident Response Plans in a tablet-native application, using Mapbox as the technology of choice.
The digital solution needed to: 
  • Allow users to zoom into sections of road on the state road network map and show the relevant incident response plan
  • Store information that is accessible when offline or in patchy mobile reception areas
  • Be accessible to the NSW RMS team to make backend updates in the future that automatically updated for users when connected to Internet

Moving from paper to digital

Two of the key features of building a tablet-native application using Mapbox was the ease of downloading offline map tiles for teams working in telco blackspot areas, and the styling of icons in the application to customise and represent speed limits, road signs and detours.

The interactive map view enabled users to quickly drill down into road sections and source the plans, saving time finding the section of road and sourcing the paper-based plan from their vehicle.

NGIS are really good at setting the expectations for a project and then meeting those expectations. NGIS are always open to adapting throughout the project to ensure RMS get the best solution at the end of the day.

Tim Sinclair, Principal Manager, Digital Customer Experience, NSW RMS

A single source of truth for regional operations teams

The digital Incident Response Plan has enabled NSW RMS to create a single source of truth with the most up-to-date information for plans across the state improving the customer and employee experience.
Regional operations teams now have the convenience of using an iPad while they are on the job, without needing to store or update the paper-based plans in their vehicles.

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