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Canadian, U.S. officials meet to enhance border emergency response

The border between Canada and the United States spans more than 9,000 kilometres – that’s more than three times the distance between Paris and Moscow – and it’s quite an area to monitor, protect and manage.

During the last two days, Canadian and American officials from various departments of their respective governments have been meeting to assess technologies that can help first responders in Canada and the United States exchange information and coordinate activities during emergency situations affecting both sides of the border.

The Canada-United States (U.S.) Enhanced Resiliency Experiment, or CAUSE IV, is an experiment that aims to demonstrate how technologies can enable Canadian and U.S. emergency management officials and responders to exchange information as an incident unfolds.

It is based on a fictional scenario involving a severe thunderstorm, which spawns a tornado, and focused on two vignettes:

This demonstration provided participants with opportunities to use technology in a simulated setting to learn how technologies, such as radio and telecommunication systems, perform under different emergency scenarios. This information will help assess the functionality and value of the technology, determine potential changes to improve the technology for operational use, and assess the procedures and training needed to maximize its use.

“The CAUSE IV experiment gave us tremendous insight into the testing of emerging communication technologies that could strengthen cross-border collaboration, Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan said in a statement.

CAUSE IV aims to demonstrate several technical capabilities, among them:

“Responding to emergencies is increasingly challenging as they become more intense and complex, which is why experiments such as CAUSE IV are so valuable to improving emergency responder’s safety and operational effectiveness by working with our American counterparts to improve Canada-U.S. cross-border communications,” according to Ralph Goodale, minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness.

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