Geographical information systems (GIS) allow facility and infrastructure owners and operators to integrate information about their assets with mapping software to provide geographical references to other known information about assets to aid their operations. GIS has traditionally been used to support planning, infrastructure development, and management activities. Emergency management-- which consists of prevention, preparation, response, mitigation, and recovery-- involves different agencies, as well as many different public safety and security technologies, such as closed circuit television (CCTV), access control systems, fire and life safety systems, incident management software and web programs, building information management (BIM) systems, and two-way radio communications. Each airport and their mutual aid partners may have different systems that may or may not communicate with each other. GIS could be a productive tool to enhance airport emergency management; however, due to the dependence of airports on their mutual aid partners, the integration and implementation of GIS must be thoughtfully planned and coordinated with them as system requirements and protocols are determined. The Federal Aviation Administration has begun to require airports receiving federal funds to collect aeronautical surveys to standards that include GIS data collection schema. This information to be collected may or may not support a GIS emergency management system. As such, research is needed to help airports understand the capabilities, benefits and challenges of integrating GIS into emergency management as well as how to implement them.
The objective of this research is to develop a guidebook for airport operators that will (1) outline the capabilities of GIS with respect to emergency management; (2) examine the benefits, costs, and challenges associated with integrating GIS into emergency management for airports and their mutual aid partners; and (3) provide guidance on implementation and use of GIS to support emergency management.