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By: RHUB, Wed Nov 23rd, 2011
Video conferencing has been growing substantially in these last couple of years and has been used for all kinds of purposes from remote medical consultations to corporate meetings and church prayers. Now video conferencing is making its way into emergency coordination with Houston TranStars deployment of a video and web conferencing system and its incorporation into their operations. Houston TranStar is a partnership comprised of four governmental agencies (Texas Department of Transportation Harris County The Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County and the City of Houston) that provides transportation and emergency management services to the Houston region since 1996. The Agency while most days provides real-time traffic information to drivers in the area and sends vehicles to clean road debris sometimes has to deal with weather emergencies like the ice storm that struck the city earlier this year. With communication being the key behind an effective coordination in a real time emergency situation video conferencing provides a way to better access the emergency conditions and communicate with the teams at the site. Were able to develop a plan of action quickly if someone is able to see exactly whats taking place on the road and make a better assessment for what people and equipment we need stated Bobby Richards senior network administrator at Houston TranStar to the SearchUnifiedCommunications.com website. Richards also provides an example on how the video conferencing system was used to access the conditions during the works of the emergency teams during the ice storm. One of the city directors was able to be in a [video] conference room and could see a lot of our guys out on the roadway and say 'We have a lot of ice out on this overpass. Throw some additional salt on it Richards said. To deal with emergencies like this TranStar has deployed eight video conferencing and web conferencing systems which allows technicians in the field to communicate with the officials stationed at the agencys headquarters an initiative with obvious benefits and that might extend to other agencies across the country. In order to choose a video conferencing solution governmental agencies will not only had to look for performance but also for security as sensitive information might easily leak into the wrong hands. While the hacking threat is real there are some video conferencing solutions in the market that offer the best security without sacrificing performance like RHUB 6in1 TurboMeeting appliance. RHUB videoconference appliance uses a proprietary encryption system as well as the customary SSL increasing security and reinforcing the remote connection RHUBs TurboMeeting is also very easy to deploy and to use requiring almost no maintenance at all.