Data Preparation

The Data Preparation section of the NWCG GISS Workflow lays the groundwork for the rest of the incident.

Follow the NWCG Standards for Geospatial Operations (GeoOps), PMS 936 for structure and organization for consistency.

Never skip steps during the Data Preparation to save time during the often chaotic incident ramp up, it will only require more effort in the long term.

GISS Workflow Diagram: Data Preparation

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GIS Workflow, explained below

Data Preparation – Do Once

  1. Gather incident information - Name, Unit ID, IRWINID, etc.
  2. Copy the GeoOps incident directory structure to hard drive. Rename for incident.
  3. Populate the base_data folder with data relevant to the fire area.
  4. Open and save a new map document (ArcMap) or project (Pro) to be the Edit Project. Name per GeoOps standards {map type} = “edit.”
    1. Internet Access? (if possible before leaving for the incident).
      1. YES – Create a Local Copy:
        1. Zoom to incident area of interest (AOI).
        2. Add the National Incident Feature Service (NIFS).
        3. Create a Local Copy (ArcMap) or Download Map (ArcGIS Pro).
      2. NO – Create an Edit Incident GDB in the incident_data\edit folder and rename to GeoOps standard and add _edit to the end of GDB name.
    2. Add template layer file and repair path to point to GDB (Local or Edit).
    3. Set data frame coordinate system to local projection.
    4. Configure Feature Templates.
    5. Save a group layer file for Event in the incident_data folder and include your name.
  5. Create and Share Web Maps for mobile data collection and information sharing.

Event GDB Decision Tree

Depending on the availability of sufficient internet connectivity, the desire of the Team to implement mobile data collection through Collector and Survey123, and the software being used, several processes can be followed by the Geographic Information System Specialist (GISS). These are outlined in the Event GDB Decision Tree to aid in planning and understanding the flow of incident data.

  1. Desktop Only Workflow without using AGOL/Collector/Survey123.
  2. NIFS Workflow, but no internet at the start.
  3. NIFS Workflow, with internet at the start.

Diagram of the decision tree showing three main branches to implement the Event Geodatabase and National Incident Feature Service.

The process and concepts in this video are still valid and useful for understanding the options available, but several naming conventions are out of date. Please review the NWCG GISS Workflow, PMS 936-1, and the Decision Tree PDF above for the most current information and naming conventions.

Decision Tree Diagram Walk Through

Video Note: Standard Naming Convention

The database under \incident_data, previously called the "Mapping GDB," is the Master Incident GDB.

Any database downloaded in ArcMap or Pro is called the Local Copy.

The Edit GDB refers only to the database used for edits when the NIFS is not being used or is unavailable (placed under \incident_data\edit).




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