The ERVIN platform, a new training concept for the fight against fire developed by TRAGSA
The experience won on the field plays a key role for progressing in the efficacy and safety in extinguishing forest fires. But the possibility of obtaining it on the site is limited, and carrying out mockups often and in a realistic way is not feasible due to their complexity, the risks, and the high costs involved in them.
The most advanced training levels in the fight against fire demand mockup scenarios with real-life exercises in order to facilitate the training and understanding of the measures which must be taken in case of an emergency in real life.
The ERVIN Platform is born as the answer to these special training needs. Since 2008, Grupo TRAGSA has been working on the development of this method for training the professionals who fight against the fire in a safer, more efficacious, and complete way. This tool has been improved under the European R&D project Advanced Forest Fire Fighting (the so-called AF3) in which the Group takes part.
A multiuser simulator
Thanks to a technology similar to that used on videogames development, a simulator has been created which allows to control up to 20 different roles of those in the fire extinguishment teams. This allows to several users to connect themselves at the same time, each controlling their role and having the same capabilities which they would have in a forest fire, interacting with their teammates in real time. A tutor will be in charge of managing both the participants and the scenarios and the characteristics of the fire.
The simulator constitutes, without a doubt, one of the most outstanding features of this project. It has been developed on a scientific basis so that the fire behaves in the more realistic way possible as it would in Nature. Something which allows, besides, to simulate fires of up to 5,000 Hectares. The realism involved in the movement of the fire and the capability of the simulator are the most advanced in the industry.
For the time being, the ERVIN platform has been presented at several events, such as at the last Forestry Meeting (Vitoria), and to a number of agencies for fighting forest fires, such as the Portuguese civil defense organization, the National School for Civil Protection, and to several Spanish forest fire fighting brigades (BRIFs).
TRAGSA and Grupo SEPI
Grupo TRAGSA belongs to Grupo SEPI, a corporate holding which includes a total of 16 state-owned companies in which it has direct, majority shareholding participations, with a workforce of around 73,000 professionals in 2014; the Spanish state-owned television and radio corporation, Corporación Radiotelevisión Española, which is attached to SEPI, and one public foundation. Equally, SEPI has direct minority shareholdings in a further ten companies, and indirect shareholdings in more than one hundred companies.
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