Kortrijk, Belgium, 28 October – Today, 28 October, Belgium commemorated the 100th anniversary of the Battle of the Yser and the First Battle of Ypres, with ceremonies attended by numerous heads of state and government. To help the police authorities ensure the security of everyone attending, Barco installed a networked visualization solution in a temporary command center. Here, data was gathered from security expert Securitas’ resources and various sensors. The joint project was an initiative of INNOS – a new Belgian platform that aims to bring together local authorities, private companies and educational and research institutes to take safety to new levels.
Established in May this year, INNOS is committed to facilitating a national security cluster. “We want companies, governments, and research institutions to work together on innovative security solutions,” explains Marleen Easton, Director of the Research Group 'Governing and Policing Security' at Ghent University. “With heads of state including Angela Merkel, the Irish president and Belgium’s King and Queen attending the official World War One ceremonies on 28 October, security was crucial today. Hence our initiative to bring the industry – Barco and Securitas – together with local police forces to set up a top-notch security solution at the provisional command center just across from the King Albert Monument in Nieuwpoort.”
The command center consisted of three main rooms: the Gold, Silver and Crisis Rooms. In the Gold Room, Barco installed a large, narrow-bezel LCD video wall and its networked visualization platform, TransForm N. The latter retrieved and distributed all the security-related information from several mobile cameras, helicopter images and open source broadcast information using secure IP technology. This enabled local distribution to the Silver and Crisis Rooms. Thanks to the X20 solution for the break-out to remote control centers, the same data was made available to the Ypres police authorities and the Brussels Federal Agency of Internal Affairs.
“Our network-centric visualization platform makes it easy to distribute and visualize sources across locations, agencies and echelons,” said Dirk Hendrickx, Vice-President Strategic Marketing Industry and Government at Barco. “With this set-up, we have shown how Barco’s displays technology and networked visualization platform – consisting of Transform N and X20 – enables Common-Operational-Pictures (COP) and shared situational awareness.”
Frank Lambrigts, CTO of Securitas Belgium & Luxembourg added: “To enhance and increase security during an event like this, we deploy our guarding services and our remote video solutions. The seamless cooperation between our Mobile C@m units, live-streaming technology and Barco’s networked visualization platform demonstrates our capabilities and our belief in the potential of public and private partnership for heightened security.”
“In the United States, it is common to install a mobile command center right on the spot when an incident happens, so that everyone involved has access to real-time information, images, etc. Here in Belgium, this approach is really groundbreaking. The mobile control room that Barco and Securitas set up in Nieuwpoort was a first and everything worked smoothly. The police forces as well as all other security authorities in Nieuwpoort, Ypres and Brussels had a real-time view of what was happening, every minute of the events,” said regional police chiefs Nicholas Paelinck and Luc Deryckere. “This was a perfect trial to see if and how we could roll out this concept in the future.”
“The remembrance activities taking place in our region are a good example of major events that require strict security measures,” concluded Marleen Easton, director of the research group ‘Governing and Policing Security’ at Ghent University. “We are delighted with the results we achieved today, as it demonstrated how collaboration between local authorities and private companies can make a major difference.”