In the event of an emergency, communities and municipalities of all sizes depend on the fast action and skilled assistance of first responders. But so much more goes on behind the scenes for law enforcement, firefighters, EMTs, and paramedics prior to and after arriving at a job site. In order for first responders to properly respond to developing situations, equipment such as weapons, life-saving materials, medication, evidence, and fleet vehicles are required. Failure to properly maintain control over any one of these critical assets could be costly.
Key control and asset management solutions offer first responders and their departments with an easy, effective means of managing and tracking critical assets. Furthermore, these solutions deliver ROI to deploying departments in the form of loss prevention, enhanced regulatory compliance, and greater employee accountability.
While police, fire, and EMS departments serve different functions, they all share the responsibility of overseeing necessary, often dangerous equipment. For law enforcement, this may include gear such as a two-way radio or personal weapon. EMS facilities and ambulances are frequently stocked with valuable equipment and drugs. An asset management system ensures that all such mission-critical materials are safely stored within a secure location. Access to such equipment is only granted to those with the proper authorizations while the system delivers real-time data regarding where each asset is stored within the system, who has removed or returned an item, and when those actions occurred.
FREE WHITEPAPER: A Guide to Asset Management Best Practices
In addition to a first responder’s on-duty essentials, there are a number of valuable assets that are often stored back at the station behind lock and key. But when disaster strikes, it can be easy for a key to become lost or misplaced in the chaos. Furthermore, if keys are left unsecured at the station during an “all hands on deck” emergency, thieves can easily retrieve the keys and gain access to a number of sensitive assets. A key control system can provide much of the safety and security precautions needed in these instances by keeping all keys securely stored in a tamper-proof key control cabinet. Furthermore, integrating a key management system with access control for first responders provides department chiefs with a streamlined process not only for securing, controlling, and tracking keys but also for more effective and efficient management of personnel, credentials, and assets.
Read How Key Control Systems Answer the Call for Fire Station Safety and Security
Another element unique to all first responder departments is the oversight of numerous fleet vehicles. Distributing fleet vehicles to different drivers, sometimes daily, proves to be a challenge for police, fire, and EMS chiefs. A unified fleet management system lets each department create its own policies to enable the automatic allocation of vehicles for specific drivers. It can also limit certain users to specific vehicles, restrict usage of specific vehicles to certain times of day, and track vehicle usage such as mileage and fuel. The applications of such a solution are especially ideal for ambulance fleet management and law enforcement fleet management, as these departments frequently assign different personnel to a different fleet vehicle every day.
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For most first responder departments, it is not enough simply to secure assets and keys physically; there is a need for multiple levels of security to ensure certain assets are not stolen, misused, or mishandled. This is especially critical for all departments that must meet a long list of regulatory requirements. For example, asset management systems for law enforcement help officers quickly respond to chain of custody requests often required of critical evidence gathered at a scene. Similarly, key control systems for EMS stations help ensure that HIPAA-protected forms, various EMT reports, and personnel records are properly secured behind lock and key. Any breech in regulatory compliance for one of these departments could lead to costly fines and even personnel termination.
Read How Advanced Key Control Systems Support Regulatory Compliance
Discover the solution that saves first responders both time and money, allowing them to get back to their mission-critical tasks. It’s just one more example of Morse Watchmans’ outside the box thinking – that you’ll find right inside the box.