In order to reduce the time from a citizen’s call to receiving assistance from emergency services, the project of the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) “Unified contact center platform to support the work of emergency services and the delivery of public services” (project) has been implemented, which improves the processing of calls to the unified emergency call number 112 , resource management and information exchange between operational services. In addition to this, a new app “112 Latvia” and a website have been developed to inform and educate citizens about the phone number 112 and how to act in various threats.
“In the event of an accident, it is important to provide appropriate assistance as soon as possible, therefore, after several years of work, a large-scale project has been concluded, which will allow to reduce the time in which the emergency services go to help those in an accident. In order to achieve this, the reception and processing of emergency reports will take place at two levels in the future,” emphasizes M. Baltmanis, head of the State Fire and Rescue Service (VUGD).
At the first level – the 112 Contact Center receives and processes all citizens’ messages – calls, eCalls, text messages about accidents and evaluates these messages, as a result of which only emergency calls are directed to the relevant operational services. At the second level, information about the accident is received electronically and simultaneously by the resource management centers of the State Fire and Rescue Service and the State Police, which send the necessary operational service resources to the scene.
“If previously a large number of calls received to the phone number 112 were forwarded, but information about calls to other operational services was transferred by telephone, then after the implementation of the project calls are forwarded and information is transferred by telephone only to the Emergency Medical Assistance Service,” adds M. Baltmanis.
One of the most significant benefits of the project for residents is that when they call the 112 phone number for events that only require the involvement of the police, residents are no longer redirected and do not have to repeat the information, as the 112 dispatcher accepts information about the incident. If residents continue to call the 110 number, they will also be connected to the 112 contact center, which will receive information about the accident and transfer the information to the necessary emergency services and other authorities. Therefore, residents should be aware that 112 dispatchers will not redirect calls to specific State Police and municipal police stations at the request of residents, but instead will find out where and what has happened and will assess whether and to what extent the involvement of operative services is necessary.
In order to improve the handling of 112 calls and the management of operational services, a Unified Contact Center Platform was developed and implemented as part of the project. As the head of the Information Center of the Ministry of the Interior, Āris Dzērvāns, emphasizes: “The unified contact center platform is a unique solution that is adapted to the needs of VUGD and VP, its development and implementation is a large-scale and complicated work that has not been carried out in Latvia until now. The introduction of the unified contact center platform is a qualitatively new step in the development of operational services. It marks the transition to the new technological platform and forms a logical and technological basis for the further digitization of the processes of solving emergency situations and the exchange of information between operational services, as well as for the automation of the management of operational services.”
Guna Balakleine, the representative of SIA “Meditec” developers of technological solutions, adds: “We would like to emphasize that this is the first project of this scale in Latvia. Within the framework of the project, in cooperation with operational services, a platform was created that receives calls, coordinates the execution of events, starting with work time and resource planning, and ending with reporting and analytics.”
Inform, receive and find out – download and install the new “112 Latvia” app on your smartphone!
Every resident of Latvia who has a smartphone is invited to download and use the new free app “112 Latvija”, which provides the user with several advantages – the ability to call or send a text message to the unified emergency call number 112, receive notifications about possible threats and learn how to act in various situations in dangerous situations.
“Changes in the climate and security situation contribute to the possibility of various threats. The past year showed it well – floods in Jēkabpils, devastating hail, storms. Therefore, the importance of a knowledgeable citizen who is informed and able to act correctly to reduce the consequences of the threat is increasingly important. “Be one of the first to find out about current warnings from meteorologists, information about serious threats or checking alarm sirens, download and use the new “112 Latvia” app,” invites M. Baltmanis.
Advantages of the new “112 Latvia” app:
- The user of the “112 Latvia” application will receive a notification on the screen of his smartphone about a possible danger, for example, red or orange level warnings about dangerous weather conditions, checking of alarm sirens and other events that require residents to be ready to take action in case of need or require immediate action from residents.
- When calling the unified emergency call number 112 from the “112 Latvia” app, 112 dispatchers will see the approximate location of the caller. This will provide an opportunity to more promptly provide assistance to those residents who cannot name the exact address of the accident. In order for the dispatcher to see a person’s location, it is necessary to allow the app to access the phone’s location at the time of installation or later.
- Sending a text message to the phone number 112 is not an everyday solution for quickly notifying the emergency services. It promotes the availability of 112 for people with speech and hearing impairments and people without a SIM card issued by Latvian mobile operators. In addition, in the “112 Latvija” app, residents will be able to familiarize themselves with tips on how to act in various threats and learn about the news of the emergency services.
You can download the app “112 Latvija” and . It is suitable for use on smartphones with iOS and Android operating systems. The application is free, but depending on the selected mobile connection tariff, a fee may be charged for using the Internet.
The new website – safety tips, recommendations for action in the event of threats and news from all operational services in one place.
The website www.112.lv is launched in order to improve citizens’ knowledge of the unified emergency call telephone number 112 and actions to be taken in the event of various threats, as well as to create awareness of those cases when it is necessary to call the telephone number 112, but when help will be provided by other institutions or merchants. . It summarizes in one place the safety tips provided by the operational services of Latvia for correct behavior in various threats. In addition, warnings about possible threats and necessary actions will be promptly posted on the website.
“The idea of a single website, where recommendations for various threats are published together, is an old idea that we were able to realize within the framework of this ERDF project. With its help, we hope to promote citizens’ understanding of those situations when the help of the operative services is needed and when other institutions and businessmen provide help, as well as knowledge of how to act in various threats,” explains M. Baltmanis.
Operational programs of the European Regional Development Fund “Growth and employment” 2.2.1. of the specific support objective “Ensure the increase in the reuse of public data and effective interaction between the public administration and the private sector” 22.214.171.124. of the event “Creation of centralized ICT platforms of public administration, optimization and development of public administration processes”, the project “Unified contact center platform for the support of the work of operative services and the delivery of public services” was implemented in the period from 25.08.2018. until 27.12.2023
Within the framework of the project, the concept of the unified contact center platform solution, technical specifications for information systems and infrastructure solutions have been developed, modernization of servers, networks and telephony solutions has been carried out, the unified contact center platform information system has been developed and put into operation, the website www.112.lv, “112 Latvija” iOS and Android apps, operational services business processes have been modernized and adapted to work with the unified contact center platform. The most complex and complicated stage of the implementation of the solution – the implementation of the information system – proceeded gradually, starting with the use of the solution from the less busy regions – Latgale and Vidzeme, and ending with Riga, which has the most emergency applications.
The total cost of the project is EUR 5,000,000, incl. European Regional Development Fund funding of 4,250,000 EUR and state budget funding of 750,000 EUR. The developer of information technology solutions is “Meditec” SIA, while the project management is provided by the Information Center of the Ministry of the Interior.