Last June, the major international security exercise Ironore2019 took place in Austria. During this large-scale exercise, the entire XVR Simulation Platform was used intensively.
The Ironore2019 exercise is funded by the European Union and aims to strengthen the European Union's civil protection mechanism. Ironore2019 is organised by the Austrian Red Cross ('Österreichisches Rotes Kreuz', ÖRK), ÖRK Styria, the Hungarian Red Cross, the Disaster Competence Network Austria and the iHELP Institute from Poland. The project is divided into three parts: a modern table-top exercise (the so-called 'Discussion Based Exercise' (DBX) in June), a large-scale outdoor exercise (the 'Full Scale Exercise' (FSX) in September) and the evaluation workshops. XVR Simulation and XVR's Austrian partner MindConsole are intensively involved in each stage.
The DBX in June used XVR On Scene, Resource Management, and Crisis Media. On Scene visualized the earthquake-hit town of Eisenerz while Resource Management mapped out the logistical side of national and international aid. XVR Crisis Media was used to simulate the e-mails between the aid organisations, news items and the attention on social media. During the virtual DBX, the focus was entirely on training the international team leaders and the coordination between the local authorities and the international teams.
A total of around 40 people took part in the DBX, ranging from team leaders and their assistants from the international teams, local commanders, mentor observers and exercise staff. MindConsole has created an extensive and detailed 3D environment for Ironore2019 of the mountain village Eisenerz and surroundings, which is included in XVR On Scene. The XVR instructors of ÖRK Steiermark subsequently built the DBX scenarios themselves in XVR On Scene, Resource Management and Crisis Media.
FSX and DRIVER+
While the DBX specifically focused on international team leaders and Austrian commanders, the FSX focuses on training all crew members and commanders. A total of 1500 people will be involved, varying from participants, observers, victim actors, role-players and training staff. During the FSX exercise in September, XVR Crisis Media will be used to simulate the e-mails, news items and social media messages. In addition, the fourth trial of the European DRIVER+ project will be carried out during the FSX. In this trial, a number of innovations for crisis management will be tried out in the realistic setting of this large-scale practical exercise.
One of the innovations that will be tested is the renewed 'psychosocial first aid training' of the Danish Red Cross, which is supported by XVR On Scene. XVR Simulation has helped the Danish Red Cross to set up a new training course using virtual reality to quickly and effectively train (spontaneous) volunteers in providing psychosocial care. This training will be tested during the trial, by first giving a group of volunteers that training and then immediately putting it to use in the ruined Eisenerz.