The Future of Helping

First-responder organizations have a mission that society has defined in unmistakable terms: Be prepared for emergencies and catastrophes. Continuing to live up to this responsibility in the future calls for simulating scenarios that clarify the concrete challenges on which preparation has to focus.

An example based on just such considerations is the Concept Truck by Rosenbauer, a prototype of a self-driving fire truck. And the work on this trailblazing technology is being done not too far from here—in the Rosenbauer Corporation’s R&D division located in the vicinity of Linz. Now, in a collaborative project with Linz AG—the city’s utility and thus the very epitome of an organization with an intensely local focus—we’re expanding the Future of Helping theme to encompass municipal challenges and responsibilities. What changes can we reasonably expect in our immediate surroundings and what preventive measures would it be advisable to take now? Another initiative attesting to our ongoing attention to future regional concerns is Europe’s first completely electric fire truck. The outcome of an Upper Austrian joint venture involving Linz AG and two of the most innovative firms in this state’s private sector, Rosenbauer and Kreisel, this vehicle is already in use. Cutting-edge technology not only helps to fight today’s fires; it also demonstrates how mobility could be interpreted and lived out in the very near future. Besides collaboration with the conscientious men and women of this region’s fire brigades, another Linz AG project has to do with hard-working creatures. Here, modern technology meets an essential, long-time helper of humankind—the bees. LoRaWAN technology, which is also used in Smart Home applications, makes it possible to monitor Linz AG’s airborne associates in order to detect health-endangering influences in a timely manner and then to quickly take the right countermeasures.

Concept Fire Truck (CFT) / Rosenbauer (AT), Credit: tom mesic

The Future of Helping is concentrating on those future challenges pertaining to the security and quality of life in our own city. There’s a long list of important points that could also be addressed: water quality, air quality, parks/green areas, waste management, etc. The great breadth of these areas of responsibility is indicative of the tremendous significance of some of the things in everyday life that we tend to take for granted. An essential role in the ability to assure the maintenance of our quality of life is played by well-balanced deployment of new and time-tested technologies. Both projects showcased here underscore the diversity of both the challenges that are being confronted as well as the approaches that are being taken here by regional firms working together responsibly.