Environmental enforcement in Ontario just received a huge shot in the arm with the Ministry of Environment adding a range of powerful capabilities to its Computer Assisted Mobile Enforcement Office (CAMEO) system.
The new and improved CAMEO system was on display at the Showcase Ontario 2004 Trade Show at the Metro Convention Centre in Toronto.
This “office on wheels” allows environmental SWAT teams to conduct more inspections and much faster. Better time tracking, case management, data analysis and reporting – are only a few of its capabilities. Phase Two of the project will see these mobile offices play an even more pivotal role in enforcement, according to Jim Chisholm, an inspector with the Ministry of Environment’s SWAT team.
Much has already been accomplished in the new phase. For instance, the SWAT team’s vehicle emissions enforcement unit (VEEU) has now been linked to CAMEO. This will enable VEEU officers to conduct on-line vehicle inspections, automatically generate provincial offer orders, and test e-ticketing capabilities and wireless technologies. In addition, wireless products and technologies – including tablet PCs and palm devices – have also been pilot tested in this new phase.
Among other things, these mobile offices are now equipped with GPS units that allow SWAT officers to record geographical coordinates of inspected companies, and satellite phones that ensure officers have online connectivity in areas with no cell phone coverage.
Chisholm said, through CAMEO, officers can access data on all aspects of their sector inspections, including legislative requirements, inspection checklists, information on hazardous materials, as well as online capabilities to issue inspection reports and provincial officer orders. “An inspection report can then be printed immediately.”
He said CAMEO enables him and other SWAT officers to spend more time on inspections, and less on administrative tasks by drastically reducing paperwork. “This translates into more inspections – and better enforcement.”
Userfriendliness, he said, is another hallmark of the system. “For instance, when filling out fields in an inspection form, there are automatic cues to generate enforcement-related activities, including orders.”
He said inspection information gathered in CAMEO can be used by the environmental SWAT team to perform diagnostics, including trend identification within industrial sectors and across different regions in the province.