By Holly DeCarlo-White
USAG Stuttgart Public Affairs Office
U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart personnel experienced Stuttgart’s emergency operations center first-hand in preparation for the full-scale force protection exercise scheduled in October.
USAG Stuttgart’s annual force protection exercise, “Stallion Shake,” is scheduled annually in September or October. Emergency scenarios are set to occur at random throughout the day with heightened security and force protection measures at each gate, and visible first responders across the installations. The exercise is coordinated by USAG Stuttgart’s Anti-terrorism Office, Directorate of Emergency Services and the respective Host Nation counterparts including Polizei, firefighters and the German Red Cross.
To better prepare for this year’s exercise, garrison personnel visited the Leitstelle für Sicherheit und Mobilität Stuttgart (SIMOS), the city’s centralized emergency operations center, Sept. 29.
The SIMOS, established in 2004, is the control center for all fire and ambulance services in the city of Stuttgart. It is also the command post location for the Lord Mayor if a crisis were to occur in the city. A new high-tech Security and Mobility Operations Center, located in Bad Cannstatt, opened in April 2016 to integrate the rescue and emergency resources of the Baden-Württemberg state capital.
Upon arrival to the center, Fachbereichsleiter Feuerwehr (Head of Fire Rescue Dept.) Denis Winter and Brandoberrat (Lt. Col.) Markus Hauser, acting chief of operations, welcomed garrison personnel and led the group inside to begin the tour. Hauser gave a detailed briefing about the center’s operational functions, including how they dispatch and track emergency vehicles.
The SIMOS is where all 112 calls are fielded by trained staff available 24/7 to provide citizens with fast assistance from a single source in any type of emergency. SIMOS bundles the management of three centers into one location:
- Integrated Operations Center of the city’s Fire Rescue and German Red Cross
- Integrated Traffic Management Center for the city’s offices for Public Order and Civil Engineering, as well as for the public transit authority Stuttgarter Straßenbahnen AG, and the Stuttgart Police Department.
- The state capital’s Command and Administration Unit for emergency and disaster management.
Cross-linking these operation centers creates numerous synergies: emergency and rescue forces can be employed more effectively; traffic can be monitored and managed in a better way. The Traffic Management Center, for instance, is immediately informed of all fire rescue operations.
The SIMOS receives an average of more than 40 calls per day. During the garrison’s visit, Stuttgart emergency teams were dispatched at least four times at the sound of the alarm.
At the close of the tour, Col. Glenn K. Dickenson and Command Sgt. Maj. Mariano Z. Alvarez presented Hauser with the Commanders Coin in thanks for the continued partnership with the city’s fire and rescue teams. Stuttgart’s first responders will work together with U.S. Forces and the Stuttgart Airport during the upcoming full scale exercise.
View the photo album on USAG Stuttgart’s Flickr, here.
Sources from the City of Stuttgart: