The $700,000 emergency management centre, based at Environment Southland in Invercargill, has officially opened and the timing of the occasion escaped no-one, just six days after the 7.1 magnitude earthquake in Canterbury.
Its manager Neil Cruickshank said the new suite provided the capability for a concerted Southland Civil Defence response based from one location should an emergency arise. It would be an information hub and act as the command post for Civil Defence operations in the Southland region, he said.
The building, the former administration block at Southland Hospital, had been completely refurbished and significantly reinforced. Environment Southland environmental manager Warren Tuckey said the building was designed to be the last standing in Southland, should a disaster strike.
The centre consists of two areas that required audio, the main room - with four pods consisting of four desks each pod and a meeting room.
Ian at Southland Electronics was given a brief from the customer that required audio in multiple zones, two zones in the main room and one zone in the meeting room area plus two projectors and a large LCD TV. They wanted to make sure all audio and video could be controlled from any of the pod pc’s.
The main issue was the centre did not have the budget to go with traditional third part controllers, so Ian and Jpro came up with a unique solution. A BSS Soundweb BLU-100 was used to control all audio and video signals. By using the RS-232 output from the Blu-100 we created a custom control page to control the video switcher. So both audio and video signal are easily controlled from each pod PC. JBL Control 25AV surface mount speakers where used in the main room and including one speaker over each pod which can be isolated. JBL Control 24C in-ceiling speakers where used in the meeting room
Mr Hamilton the national director of Civil Defence said he was impressed with the set-up. The collaborative input of all four Southland councils in the foundation of the centre had worked well.
Installed by Southland Electronics
Programming and Commissioning assistance by JPRO