Cases Explore the world of Geo-information

Maurice Willekens

A clear picture of the impact of flooding

About the District Water Board Dutch Northern Quarter (Hoogheemraadschap Hollands Noorderkwartier)

The majority of the province of North Holland above the North Sea Canal (Noordzeekanaal) consists of polders; some of these polders were drained four hundred years ago. The District Water Board Dutch Northern Quarter is responsible for water safety, protection against flooding and the provision of sufficient clean, fresh water. The District Water Board also manages polder roads. To limit the impact of crises, such as flooding, during a disaster it is important to be able to make the right decisions and take measures. This depends on the availability of up-to-date and shared operational pictures incorporating information about the water.

Which issue would this resolve?

  • How do we limit the disastrous impact of flooding and how do we communicate internally and with the safety partners as effectively as possible?
  • How does a flood develop? How long before a location is flooded? What water depths are anticipated?
  • How do we make the most effective decisions?
  • How do we ensure that all involved parties constantly have the same picture of the current situation in the event of a flood or disaster?

Unique characteristics of the solution

  • Eagle Water, the incident management solution for District Water Board Dutch Northern Quarter, which supports net-centric working, has its own special characteristics:
  • accurate operational pictures incorporating information about the water with real-time availability of up-to-date and shared information about the flooding;
  • improved cooperation and interchange of information between all involved parties;
  • detailed evaluation options for investigation and process improvement.

How does Eagle Water work?

Eagle Water is a solid, web-based Crisis Management System. The system provides an up-to-date and accurate operational picture incorporating information about the water and enables this information to be shared. This enables sound decisions to be made quickly about any measures to be taken. Eagle Water is based on net-centric working: ensuring that relevant information that is available is immediately passed on to (some of) the involved parties (Common Operational Picture). During flooding, a common up-to-date picture is essential. This picture comprises a combination of geo-information and written operational communication.

What does it provide?

Net-centric working lays the foundations for Eagle Water. The shared picture gives all involved parties immediate information on where the incident is taking place, what is happening, which measures are required and which decisions have been taken.
“Eagle Water allows our organisation to evolve in terms of net-centric working, plus innovations in crisis information management are really taking off. It is also an incentive to continue to develop our partnership with our chain partners, such as other Water Boards, the Department of Waterways and Public Works, utility companies and the safety regions.” Raymond de Landmeter, Crisis Coordinator at District Water Board Dutch Northern Quarter: “Experience has shown that imaging is a critical success factor in warding off a crisis. For effective decisions to be taken, it is crucial to quickly have an up-to-date and unambiguous picture of the situation. The fact that this decision is then shared through the network means that a decision immediately reaches the person who has to action this. To us, Eagle Water is a pre-eminent Crisis Management System which presents our own geo-information and that of other parties quickly and smartly and provides a clear visual insight into what a crisis looks like.”