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Wildland Fire GIS: A Day in the life of a GIS Specialist – a 16 hour day in 2019

Presenter(s):  Aaron Seifert


You may know the many map products that have been produced by wildland fire incidents.  How do GIS Specialists assigned to the incident get their information from the field to produce maps each day? Where are they working, how do they get maps and information out to field staff and the general public? What does the 16 hour day consist of anyway?  Tools used are ArcMap, ArcGIS Pro, Event Geodatabases, ArcGIS Online with Collector & Survey 123 Apps, Avenza PDF Map App, Internet, FTP, and a mini local network of large format plotters external drives and laptops.  Setup of common map products produced on paper and online will be discussed using the standards of GSTOP.  Principles of Incident Command Structure and geospatial standards will help with any large emergency or disaster to take home as knowledge to your organization.  You too can get training to join the excitement and fun on assignments, as the demands of larger and more complex incidents need more and more GIS Specialists!

Key Takeaway: To know that working without the Internet in this age of everything connected is possible.  Efficient mapping to meet daily deadlines are achievable. Using the Incident Command System and incident GIS standards allow bringing diverse people together quickly can be very manageable.  Embracing new technology can help greatly improve workflow.

Intended Audience: Those in the emergency management, fire, and EMS will learn about components to assist their daily work or planning for a range of emergencies.  This centers on field data collection standards using ArcGIS Online, and Apps of Collector & Survey 123.

About the presenter(s):

Aaron Seifert currently works for Guardian Medical Transport & Guardian Air, departments of Flagstaff Medical Center and Northern Arizona Healthcare.  He is a certified GIS Professional with over 23 years of experience in GIS since receiving a Bachelor's degree from Northern Arizona University in Applied Geography.  While he worked for the City of Sedona, Aaron became a volunteer EMT and a Firefighter with the Sedona Fire District.  That experience helped Aaron join Guardian as an EMT and GIS/IT Specialist 10 years ago. He has been an incident GIS Specialist for Incident Management Teams the last 8 years.  Meanwhile Aaron is also a volunteer GIS Director for the Arizona Trail Association.