Wildland Agencies to Use Lockheed Martin-Developed ROSS Software Tool
LAKEWOOD, CO, 05/01/2003 -- A new software tool developed by Lockheed Martin for agencies responding to wildfires and other incidents has been declared operational by the National Wildfire Coordinating Group (NWCG). The action clears the way for authorized Federal, state and local agencies to use the Resource Ordering and Status System (ROSS), a Java-based tool developed under contract by Lockheed Martin (NYSE:LMT). Effective April 15, wildland agencies nationwide may now employ the system to status and dispatch crews, overhead personnel, aircraft, equipment and other resources to assist in wildfires, law enforcement activities and other incidents. These incidents may involve hazardous material conditions or natural disasters, such as tornados, floods and hurricanes.
The NWCG recently advised its member agencies that the operational test and evaluation phase of ROSS version 1.2.5 had been completed and that the final implementation phase had begun. The administration and status module of ROSS has been deployed successfully for the past two years, providing the agencies an initial implementation capability.
Lockheed Martin's Information Technology business unit began ROSS development for the NWCG under a General Services Administration Schedule 70 contract task order managed by the U.S. Forest Service.
Linda Gooden, president of Lockheed Martin Information Technology, said, We are excited about ROSS' acceptance as an operational system. Because of this system, dispatchers will now be able to deploy resources faster, with the end result of fewer Americans endangered by loss of land, property, or lives.
The system enables dispatch offices to electronically exchange and track resource information in a near real-time mode. When all modules are implemented, ROSS will provide the capability to status, order, and track all tactical, logistical, service, and support resources mobilized by the incident dispatch community and will operate in nearly 400 interagency dispatch and coordination offices throughout the Nation.
The National Interagency ROSS project was established in 1997 and chartered by the NWCG in June 1998. The primary purpose of the project is to automate the identification, ordering and tracking process that, up until now, has been handled by phone or paper. Automation through ROSS will reduce labor-intensive practices, increase customer service, improve communications, and lower the costs associated with delivering services to field operations.
The members of the NWCG include Bureau of Indian Affairs, Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, National Park Service, U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Fire Administration, InterTribal Timber Council, Federal Emergency Management Agency, and the National Association of State Foresters.