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International Forum to Advance First Responder Innovation (IFAFRI)

International Forum to Advance First Responder Innovation (IFAFRI) is an initiative from the Department of Homeland Security (USA) that was started in 2014. The Forum consists of participants from authorities that represent first responders from 13 countries and the European Commission and meet 1-2 times per year.

The purpose of the Forum is to identify common capability gaps with the objective to facilitate developing the right methods and technology to make the work of first responders both safer and more efficient on future accident sites. In order to work on this, three committees have been established: 

  • Capability Gap committee, led by Stefan Tangen (MSB), responsible for identifying common needs.
  • Research and Development committee, led by the Netherlands, focusing on developing Research and Development cooperations.
  • Stakeholder engagement committee, led by the United States, focusing on stakeholder and business intelligence.

Thus far, 10 common capability gaps have been identified and the work to develop these as well as identifying ongoing frontier research is ongoing:

  1. The ability to know the location of responders and their proximity to threats and hazards in real time.
  2. The ability to detect, monitor, and analyse active and passive threats and hazards at scenes in real time.
  3. The ability to rapidly identify hazardous agents and contaminants.
  4. The ability to incorporate information from multiple and non-traditional sources (e.g. social media) into incident command operations.
  5. The ability to maintain communications with responders in any surroundings and situations.
  6. The ability to obtain critical information remotely about the extent and content of an incident.
  7. The ability to monitor the physiological signs of emergency responders.
  8. The ability to conduct on-scene operations remotely without endangering responders.
  9. The ability to create actionable intelligence based on data and information from multiple sources.
  10. The ability to provide appropriate and advanced personal protective equipment (e.g. protective clothing, respiratory protective equipment) for all types of incidents and conditions.

For more information about the entire work of IFAFRI, please follow the link below.

IFAFRI forum website Yvonne Näsman is the contact person at MSB.

Latest reviewed: 18 August 2020

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