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Boots on the ground, and in the air. Indicium is working hard to keep you safer this summer.

Updated: Feb 12

If you have been keeping up with the news, you will have noticed a recurring and somewhat alarming message about the fact that Australia is preparing for a very hot summer, with the potential that 2024 will be the hottest year on record globally

 

The changing weather predictions have been attributed to the transition from a La Nina climate pattern, characterised by a period of wetter and cooler conditions, to an El Nino climate pattern. El Nino weather means that we can expect more intense heat waves, drought conditions, and an increase in the severity of bushfires. Many of these conditions are already being felt across the globe.


Examples of the global impact of El Nino

With some very high temperatures already being experienced around Australia in the last couple of weeks, it is understandable that concerns exist about what the upcoming summer is likely to present in terms of bushfires. Many are mindful that the Black Summer Bushfires in 2019/2020 occurred at the end of an El Nino period, further heightening concerns about the risk of large-scale bushfires over the coming 12 months.

 

The same concerns are being voiced here in Tasmania. Not only have November temperatures been warmer than average, but Tasmania has also seen a 51% reduction in average rainfall compared to the expected average for this time of year. The potential of devastating fires is on the minds of many, particularly after the recent fire at Dolphin Sands which destroyed two houses, and required residents to shelter overnight at the town jetty.


An Indicium team member checking the camera installation
An Indicium team member checking the camera installation

Indicium has been working hard behind the scenes to deploy innovative #FireTech across Tasmania, helping to maximise Tasmania’s fire detection capabilities for the 2023-2024 summer period. In collaboration with our forestry clients, we’ve been busily deploying Fire Foresight solutions across some of the most fire-vulnerable areas of Tasmania. This will ensure maximised visibility of wilderness areas in preparation for a projected hot summer, and beyond.




The Fire Foresight solution uses AI-powered computer vision to enhance early bushfire detection. Fire detection cameras are installed upon operating fire towers to provide optimal vantage points across forested landscapes. The cameras can be controlled remotely via the Indicium Platform, providing users with 360° visibility of the surrounding area.


Panoramic image from Fire Foresight fire camera
An example of the vision achieved by Fire Foresight

One of the key advantages of this technology is the real-time imagery generated, providing critical information to authorities and fire responders about the behaviour and spread of fires, helping them to make better fire management decisions. The AI vision improves the speed and accuracy of fire detection by identifying smoke, helping to ensure that fires are detected at an early stage, therefore improving the capacity of fire response crews to effectively control and contain the fire. Early containment is vital to reducing the risk to wildlife, forests, and communities – ultimately saving lives and protecting infrastructure.


A Fire Foresight Camera Image with AI Smoke Detection
A Fire Foresight Camera Image with AI Smoke Detection

By the end of December, our team will have travelled over 1600kms to install six cameras across remote areas of Tasmania. Each camera monitors approximately 700 square kms of wilderness, which when combined means that nearly 10% of the Tasmanian land mass is now covered by Fire Foresight’s AI-enabled fire detection capabilities. This is an incredible achievement!

 

In addition to this, at the time of writing this piece, our cameras have processed 1.7 terabytes of data, equating to 1.5 million images, since their installation.


A Fire Foresight camera keeping watch over some Tasmanian forest
A Fire Foresight camera keeping watch over some Tasmanian forest

The team at Indicium is committed to ensuring that as we wind down into the Christmas/holiday period, Tasmanians can relax with their families knowing that innovative #FireTech is being used to boost Tasmania’s fire detection capabilities, helping to identify fires more rapidly than ever before.






We’re looking forward to 2024, and continuing to work alongside a range of Tasmanian forest and wilderness managers on Project Forest Foresight, deploy more Fire Foresight solutions around the state – activities that will further enhance how fire is predicted, detected and managed in Tasmania.


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