Area Planning’s GIS department is working to assist emergency services providers in Pendleton County improve their response times. The work is being pursued under the latest of a series of professional services contracts between Pendleton County Fiscal Court and NKAPC.
“I meet each year with members of the Fiscal Court to discuss what GIS projects they would like accomplished,” said Trisha Brush, GISP, NKAPC’s deputy director for GIS Administration. “This year we’re updating their address data and also mapping fire hydrants.”
“We’re using GPS (Global Positioning System) technology to locate and map the hydrants,” said Brush. “We locate each of the hydrants in the real world and determine the longitude and latitude of the location. Once we load that coordinate into our GIS, it appears on the map.”
Mapping the hydrants will be a major step forward for emergency services personnel.
“We’re working closely with the County’s dispatch center, the Fiscal Court, and John Steele, the Property Valuation Administrator,” said Brush. “The County’s new emergency management director is really excited about the work we’re doing.”
Brush suggests Pendleton County officials are being “proactive” with their focus on GIS mapping for emergency services purposes.
“They’re on the right track. Unfortunately, a lot of communities learn too late that they should’ve been pursuing the basics,” she said.
Brush is hopeful that NKAPC and Pendleton County will be able to work together in the future.
“It’s great that we can work together regionally,” she said. “Ultimately, it’s the taxpayers who benefit from these joint efforts.”