In partnership with Spark New Zealand and Attentis, Selwyn District Council is leading the way in its commitment to public safety, by installing new cutting-edge technology to help in the detection of fires in McHughs Forest Park near Darfield.
Yesterday marked the official launch and installation of three fire sensor poles that use a combination of thermal imaging, 360° cameras, and air quality technology to monitor environmental conditions and will notify emergency services if any sign of fire is detected. The data will also be made live to the public through the council’s partnership with technology innovator Attentis.
The app can be used to monitor real-time conditions in the forest, its walking trails and the popular fairy doors walk. A QR code is located on signage at McHughs Forest Park and will be shared via Selwyn District Council’s website.
This project has also seen a strong collaboration with Christchurch City Council, who are also trialing the same technology in Bottle Lake Forest.
Selwyn Mayor Sam Broughton says the sensors are a great example of embracing new technology to improve safety and enjoyment of the district.
“It’s exciting to have this technology available for McHughs Forest and for what it could mean for the future of Selwyn. Having real-time, 24-hour monitoring in place ready to alert emergency services is extremely important, but it’s also a great example of how we can embrace technology to help people explore and enjoy the district, safely.”
Spark IoT (Internet of Things) lead Michele Wong the early fire detection sensors by technology partner Attentis demonstrate how relevant data and edge processing combined with the appropriate IoT cellular network services can provide situational awareness in areas where speed of information can be hugely important.
“We are excited to work with Selwyn District Council on the deployment of their early fire detection networks. The project has generated some interest with other councils, commercial forestry operation and other organisations actively considering the technology solution.”
Attentis Managing Director Cameron McKenna says, “This technology is instrumental in delivering a proactive response to public safety and I am particularly proud to work alongside a team of individuals who prioritise this.”
The success of this partnership also depends on the critical collaboration with Fire and Emergency New Zealand, who are interested to learn how technology like this can help reduce the incidents and consequences of fire in our community. District Manager Dave Stackhouse says, “Fire and Emergency NZ has worked collaboratively with Selwyn District Council on this project, and we congratulate them on using technology to help reduce the impact of fire on our community.”
The sensors are self-powered and use a combination of artificial intelligence and Internet of Things (IoT) technology—a system of interrelated computers and machines that can transfer data across a network without needing people-to-people or people-to-computer interaction. All parties joined together to celebrate the launch of this new project, an important initiative for the district.