- The Need
- Proactive risk management
- The Product
- BlueDot Insights
- The Outcome
- "A global perspective"
The Greater Toronto Airports Authority operates Toronto Pearson International Airport, Canada’s largest airport in terms of total passenger traffic and North America’s second largest in terms of international traffic. In June 2020, the GTAA entered into a strategic agreement with BlueDot as part of their Healthy Airport commitment. Here’s how Dwayne Macintosh, Director of Safety and Security at Toronto Pearson, describes the partnership.
Previously, we were only dealing with things as they came at us. With BlueDot, we can be forward-looking so that we’re seeing things that are occurring in the world and adjusting our operations to proactively manage them. Dwayne Macintosh, Director of Safety and Security at Toronto Pearson
1. A Way To Look Forward
BlueDot is part of the GTAA’s long-term plan to stay one step ahead of infectious disease threats.
- When COVID started, we were looking for different ways we could continuously grow the confidence and trust of the travelling public. And when we came across BlueDot and its capabilities, we thought that was a perfect fit.
- We’ve had a pandemic plan in place for many years that helps us address situations that involve sick passengers arriving at Toronto Pearson. Our response plans for a pandemic are initiated with the Public Health Agency of Canada, which is the lead agency responsible for Canada’s response to infectious diseases.
- “BlueDot adds a very important layer to that plan. Previously, we were only dealing with things as they came at us. With BlueDot, we can be forward-looking so that we’re seeing things that are occurring in the world and adjusting our operations to proactively manage them. It’s a different perspective.”
2. A Whole Airport Approach
The GTAA has connected teams across the organization to BlueDot Insights — and new use cases are being developed each week.
- The GTAA has created an advisory group with people from all aspects of the operation, since the insights from BlueDot provide guidance to each aspect of our business. As a part of our preparedness and to ensure we are able to adjust our operation, we really need feedback from everyone. The advisory group includes:
- the group that is responsible for the daily operations of the terminal;
- our airport duty managers, who are responsible for the operations of the airport;
- our cleaning contractor;
- our IT department;
- our safety team;
- our planning group, as we look to use this for forecasting our passenger loads; and
- local Public Health Agency of Canada representatives.
- “We are currently using BlueDot to identify airports from different countries with high caseloads of COVID. The theory is that if we know where COVID or other infectious diseases are today, we can we use predictive analytics to see where they’ll be tomorrow. We’re working to develop that mindset within our team.”
- “We’re taking these insights and applying them to our cleaning program. Information on flights from these destinations can be used to decide where to park an aircraft to shorten the route that passengers need to travel, thus minimizing the area that needs to be cleaned and reducing the potential for cross contamination. We can then apply our cleaning processes more rapidly, more effectively and in a manner that is more cost efficient.”
3. A Global Perspective
Based on Toronto’s integration, BlueDot Insights could be put into action across the aviation industry.
- Given that Toronto is a global hub, we need BlueDot’s ability to look at what’s happening around the world to provide us guidance. Toronto Pearson is Canada’s largest airport, and it’s very important that not only do our passengers feel healthy and safe on their journey, but that we also do our part to minimize the possibility of a future pandemic. Aside from the operational considerations, we’re also cognizant that a partnership like this one plays a vital role in rebuilding the public’s trust in air travel as a healthy and safe means of transportation.
- We hope to expand the knowledge that we learn from BlueDot to our partners around the world so that this becomes a global perspective where all airports are looking at things in a similar way. Aviation is a complex network of entities, from airports and airlines to government agencies, and it’s vitally important that we communicate with each other to ensure the journey is healthy, safe and consistent across the entire network. This isn’t about a competitive advantage for Toronto; this is about doing the right thing, educating ourselves and sharing knowledge with our counterparts around the world to the ultimate benefit of our passengers and employees.