Research Information

Implementation of Real-time Safety Status Information Map and Tangible Disaster Safety Management Service
  • Date2020-11-02
  • Hit388


Implementation of Real-time Safety Status Information Map and Tangible Disaster Safety Management Service

Tae-hoon Kim(Ph.D)
Research Fellow, Department of Future Technology and Convergence Research


Recent accidents like the fires at multi-use facilities such as Sejong Hospital in Miryang (2018), at the goshiwon (highly dense studio accommodation) in Jongno-gu, Seoul (2018), at a nursing hospital in Gimpo (2019) and at the Jeil Pyeonghwa Market in Jung-gu, Seoul (2019) have caused extensive damage to life and property, increasing public and social interests and concerns. Multiple-user facilities are becoming denser, more complex and larger in size, increasing the risk of fires. Children, seniors, the disabled and other socially vulnerable persons are particularly at risk in the event of fires and other large disasters, calling for a prompter disaster response. While spatial data and other IT-related technologies are being used to a limited extend in disaster response systems, state-of-the-art IT such as sensors, sensor networks, high-capacity processing, situational awareness and three-dimensional visualization techniques need to be applied. In particular, technologies that provide real-time safety information on the sites of fires to enable prompt response, real-time three-dimensional safety status map services, sensor-based real-time site monitoring services, services to provide optimized dynamic evacuation pathways which change based on the progress of a fire, services providing optimized response plans for each situation and virtual training services based on spatial data can allow for a more effective response to fires.

Implementation of a time-variant safety status map

A “time-variant safety status map” displays the safety level of zones, buildings and stories in buildings, all of which vary over time, on a map. This type of map provides an easy-to-understand picture of building risk levels, which are an extremely complex issue. A similar real-world example is the government’s Korea Safety Map. This service provides state safety information (transportation, disaster response, security, services for the socially vulnerable, infrastructure, occupational safety, public health, accidents, safety facilities, etc.) in a GIS environment for use by the public anywhere and at any time through the web ( and mobile devices. The service is based on statistical data or data gathered by state agencies and local governments. As the spatial scope of these services is limited to the jurisdiction of the respective local governments, they are limited in terms of their capacity to provide real-time information or identify precise user locations. In contrast, a time-variant safety status map has a more detailed spatial scope (building complexes, buildings, floors, zones) and uses data from indoor fire sensors, etc. and local weather information to provide safety status information that is more precise in terms of time and location. To generate the safety status information, data from previous research, national statistical data and data from the fire insurance association were researched and analyzed, classifying the information into four categories—risk levels by business category, building safety, firefighting equipment and facilities and fire risk—as shown in Figure 1. The items under these four categories were category of business, building structure, number of floors, year constructed, automatic fire extinguishing equipment, automatic fire detection equipment, smoke ventilation equipment, fire load, hazardous materials, risks in the vicinity, ease of evacuation, promptness of reporting, and accessibility. 

The data necessary for the respective component items is obtained through public data portals or on-site data surveying. Using the time-variant safety status estimation model, safety status indices are assessed for each building, floor and zone. Of these component elements, the business category of tenant businesses in a building is a priority indicator of a building’s fire risk. Businesses were classified into 30 categories, and the AHP (Analytic Hierarchy Process) was used to assess the base risk level, converted risk level, weight for risk to human life and overall business category risk level for each. The results were combined to assess a risk level for each. Building safety data was obtained through the public data portal ( and the building register. Information on firefighting equipment and facilities was acquired using data from periodic firefighting equipment inspections, while fire risk and fire response status data were acquired through firefighting equipment inspection and on-site inspection data and geospatial data. Time-variant data that will be added include data from fire sensors, etc. from within individual buildings, and weather data (wind speed, wind direction, etc.) which can be obtained from the Korea Meteorological Administration. Research in these areas is currently ongoing.

[Figure 1] (Tentative) Component Elements of Safety Status Information

To organize the time-variant safety status information by building, floor and zone, a code system was adopted. Building ideas are assigned as “postal code” + “building number.” The postal code is a code used for convenience in classifying outgoing mail according to recipient address. Addresses are converted into numbers according to a defined set of rules, meaning each address has a unique value. To identify large buildings or multi-user buildings which have single addresses, a building number (or index, two digits) are added.  Floor ID indicates the number of each floor, with the ground floor assigned the number “1.” Floors below ground level have a “B” added in front, denoting “basement.” Zone ID is used to differentiate fire zones or business categories on the same level, and layer ID is used when displaying the results from the safety status information estimation model; the results can be divided into a fire layer, an earthquake layer, a time-variant fire layer and a time-variant earthquake layer. An example of the time-variant safety status information code system is shown in Figure 2.

[Figure 2] Code system (example) for time-variant safety status information

Safety status information grades were defined by referring to Article 16, Paragraph 1 of the Special Act on the Safety Control of Public Structures, and Annexed Table 8) of the Enforcement Decree to the Special Act on the Safety Control of Public Structures. The grades form a five-step scale: A (outstanding), B (good), C (average), D (unsatisfactory) and E (poor). Details are as shown in Table 1.

Safety grade


A (Outstanding)

Outstanding fire safety in terms of building structure and automatic fire extinguishing facilities. Low possibility of fire, and good containment of any fires that do occur, resulting in only mild damage.

B (Good)

Good safety status and business categories, resulting in a low possibility of fire. Building structure is stable, with automatic fire extinguishing equipment installed in most parts of the building, preventing complete destruction in the event of a fire.

C (Average)

Fire risk level of the business categories represented is average. Some parts of the building are not fireproof. Automatic fire extinguishing equipment is installed in 50% of the building or less, making the spread of a fire a possibility.

D (Unsatisfactory)

Building is not managed satisfactorily. Many parts of the building are not fireproof, resulting in high fire risk. There is almost no automatic fire extinguishing equipment, and the building stands to suffer extensive damage in the event of a fire.

E (Poor)

Business categories represented are prone to fires. Building structure is not fireproof, and there is no automatic fire extinguishing equipment, making complete destruction of the building in the event of fire very possible.

[Table 1] Time-variant Safety Status Information Grades

The safety status information assigned in this manner is converted into a map and displayed through the 3D safety status information platform. Data for zones, levels and buildings is displayed at the appropriate LOD (Level of Detail) set by the user, enabling efficient visualization. The 3D viewer may look something like Figure 3.


[Figure 3] Visualization(example) of safety status information by building/floor/zone

Development of a tangible disaster safety management service

To provide tangible disaster safety management services, conventional disaster management concepts must be further developed from four perspectives: “location,” “time,” “method” and “training.” That is, the capacity to properly respond to disaster situations requires that a user be provided risk status information on his current position, building or zone or space of interest (“location) that is as timely and accurate (“time”) as possible, and through various state-of-the-art devices (“method”), and that the user is repeatedly trained (“training”) in virtual reality situations mirroring actual on-site conditions. The time-variant safety status information mentioned in the above can be an effective tool supporting an easy, visual judgment of on-site disaster safety situation information. The proposed tangible disaster safety management service, as shown in Figure 4, can be divided into disaster situation services and normal situation services. During normal times, a user must be able to easily access building information such as firefighting equipment, and the location and status of various facilities, as well as monitor real-time information from various sensors installed inside and outside the building. Such information must be represented in the 3D safety status information, allowing at-a-glance determination of building safety information. The system must be interfaced with building occupant information for each floor and zone, and CCTV systems must be built so that users can view the building situation directly. The system must allow for the use of an automated tool for total inspection of equipment at the time of periodic fire safety inspections, and 3D spatial data in the form of digital twins, for instance, must be implemented to allow virtual disaster response training in a variety of scenarios. When a disaster situation occurs, the building manager must promptly be made aware of the situation through a mobile device, etc. Emergency alerts must be issued through various devices, and information on the situation must immediately be reported to the competent authorities (local government and fire station, etc.). When alerting building tenants, occupants and firefighters of the emergency, the information must be provided through the web, mobile devices, wall-mounted dashboards and automatic broadcasts in a manner that enables each party to perform his or her assigned role, or to evacuate effectively. For an optimized response with minimal damage, it is necessary to take how the fire is spreading into account. Using the data collected by sensors in the building, optimized evacuation routes must be provided by floor, zone and occupant type. In addition, the ever-changing time-variant safety status map will enable the building safety manager to promptly respond to situations on-site, and periodically provide related real-time information to fire stations and firefighters. Situational response information that is optimized to site conditions must be provided to fire response organizations (emergency response teams and evacuation teams, etc.) among building tenants. 

[Figure 4] Tangible disaster management service (example)


While various studies and response system development projects have been conducted with the aim of enabling effective responses to fires and other disasters that occur in buildings such as multi-user facilities, there is much room for improvement in the areas of response systems and services development utilizing state-of-the-art IT technology. The time-variant safety status map and tangible disaster safety management service discussed in the text are being developed as national R&D projects, to allow prompt identification and responses to such disaster situations. Research and discussions continue on the questions of how time-variant outdoor and indoor data such as sensor information and weather information may be effectively reflected in the safety status index of the current safety status information map, and how the tangible disaster safety management service can be provided to the public in a less expensive, more compact package form.  If these issues are resolved, and laws and related institutes are supplemented as necessary, it is expected that better preparedness and more prompt response to disasters involving multi-user facilities and other buildings will help minimize damage to property and human life.


· KIET (December 2019) Second Year Report on Development of Technologies to Provide Tailored Spatial Data-based Tangible Disaster Management Content
· KIET (September 2020) Presentation materials for Interim Report on Third Year of Development of Technologies to Provide Tailored Spatial Data-based Tangible Disaster Management Content