The Dusseldorf fire and rescue service recently replaced its 10-year-old video and intercom systems with an integrated video- and intercom-over-IP solution from manufacturers Geutebruck and Schneider Intercom. The system, which links 12 fire stations via the existing municipal IP network, serves two functions. Some of the cameras monitor the emergency call points outside the fire stations which the public can use to raise the alarm if an incident occurs in the immediate vicinity. This helps controllers in the 24-hour emergency control room at Hüttenstrasse by enabling them to see the callers as well as talk to them. They can then arrange a suitable response even if the local fire crew is currently out attending an incident and therefore unavailable. Meanwhile other cameras on the fire station premises are used for conventional security purposes, monitoring doors, gates and barriers which could be vulnerable especially while crews are away.
Having invited tenders from a range of international companies, the Dusseldorf Fire Service chose the Geutebruck and Schneider solution because of the companies' individual high reputations in the IT field, and because of the interfaces which enable subsystems to network directly and form an integrated solution. They were also attracted by the potential for future expansion offered by the GeViScope video system platform. The new equipment has been running smoothly since the start of 2009 and in future years it is planned to extend it to cover the airport fire station and a new accident and emergency center at Hassels.