Evacuation Management Software – What You Should Know

23 April 2020
Security personnel in hard hats

How much do you value the safety of your staff? Since an emergency can happen at any time, the way you manage an evacuation is key to ensuring the safety of staff, visitors and contractors.

The key to successful evacuation management is having real-time information about the status of your site and the location of individual personnel within it.

Musterd, from Thinking Software, is a real-time evacuation management system that you can rely on. It is designed to give you a real-time fire roll call as well as managing many other types of evacuations.

What is Musterd?

The Musterd Evacuation Management System combines two powerful solutions in one single application. Musterd provides both a real-time Roll Call list and a comprehensive sweep and clear status report. The fire roll call solution can be installed as a standalone system, or integrated with a number of 3rd party applications like access control, visitor management or HR systems. The integrated solution is designed to watch for activity in other, related systems, and use this new information to enhance the picture of who’s on site and where you can find them. As this real-time data arrives, Musterd adds it to the store of clear and detailed evacuation management information that your Safety Team needs to protect your site during a drill or actual incident.

In the event of an emergency evacuation, most organisations already conduct a fall-back “sweep and clear” process. This approach is based on the well-proven practice of having Fire Marshals or members of a safety team physically sweep a site to ensure that no-one is trapped or injured, and that the various swept areas can safely be ignored by inbound Fire & Rescue teams. Sweep & Clear personnel are important members of the Safety Team, but it’s also the case that they’re at risk of harm as they perform the sweep across a site when everyone else is leaving it for a place of safety. Therefore, it’s critical that the location of each member of the team is known, and that the status of their progress through the sweep can be monitored in real-time.

What Are the Benefits?

  • 24/7/365 peace of mind that in the event of an emergency, you’ve minimised the risk to your personnel
  • Access to real-time evacuation management information
  • Musterd can be integrated with most access control systems
  • Musterd is two solutions, which can either be deployed independently or together within one application
  • Multiple options to make people safe
  • Simple and easy to use
  • Can be deployed instantly via the cloud or self-hosted
  • The system is fully scalable
  • Musterd can be deployed across multiple sites
  • The system can be configured to manage multiple types of evacuation events or threats like fire, gas, terror and others
  • Fire drills can be monitored and reported on to prove their frequency, compliance and effectiveness
  • Musterd is cost effective. It reduces risk and helps you to prove the efficiency of your safety process

How Does it Work?

Musterd is a web-based fire roll call and evacuation management solution. The application is securely hosted in the Microsoft Azure Cloud Platform, or it can be deployed in a private cloud or on-premises if required.

How Musterd works

Musterd uses dedicated, ruggedised hand-held mobile devices which are permanently connected to the Musterd application. The mobile application allows emergency events to be created. These emergencies could be anything from fire alerts, water or gas leaks or physical security threats.
Once an emergency event has been created, the Musterd application produces two lists; an Emergency Roll Call list containing everyone who needs to be accounted for, and a Sweep and Clear list of zones across the site which need to be visited and made safe.

Emergency Roll Call List

Essentially this list starts as a report of every person who is reported to be on-site at the time of the emergency and puts them in an ‘unsafe’ list. As personnel make themselves safe at muster points, the application moves them from the ‘unsafe’ list to the ‘safe’ list. The hope is that everyone will be moved to the ‘safe’ list and the ‘unsafe’ list will be empty.

There are a variety of ways in which personnel can be made safe:

  • Scanning a fob/card at a fixed or mobile mustering point
  • Scanning a QR code on at one of the dedicated handheld devices
  • Manually making people safe from the list on the app

Emergency Sweep and Clear List

The Sweep and Clear list works in a very similar way to the Emergency Roll Call list. Instead of reporting on the safety of people, this list is configured to report on the safety of zones. At the start of an evacuation, the initial list shows all zones as ‘unsafe’. Fire Marshals start their sweep of the site to ensure that everyone has safely evacuated. Luminescent signs, each with an individual QR code, are placed at the end of each zone. Using a dedicated Musterd handheld device, Fire Marshals scan these QR codes to report that the zone is safe. This is updated in real-time, via the application, to all other devices. This allows anyone with a device (or access to the web portal) to see the precise status of the sweep.

Should a Fire Marshal require assistance or discover a hazard, this can also be reported via the app, so that everyone else can be notified.

Musterd Dedicated Devices

We can supply you with tough and reliable, dedicated devices that can cope with extreme conditions. The devices will come with the Musterd app, pre-installed and configured. We also install a mobile management app which will restrict other unknown apps or services from being installed which may interfere with the reliability of the device. This also allows us to monitor the status of your devices to make sure they are always ready in the event of an emergency.


Mobile Muster Points

We can also supply our devices with a multi-frequency, multi-format RFID card/fob reader attached. This can turn your device into a mobile muster point, eliminating the need to install a fixed muster reader, and reducing the cost of supplying the location with power and data.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much does it cost?

  • Musterd isn’t just a powerful evacuation management solution; it's cost-effective as well. 
  • Roll Call pricing is based on both the numbers of users and the quantity of access control events to process, with an RRP of £1.00 per user/month. 
  • Sweep and Clear pricing is based on £10 per zone/month. 
  • Our ruggedised hardware is also extremely competitively priced.

Can we put the Musterd App on our own devices?

  • The technical answer to this is yes, since Musterd is an Android App.
  • However, there are some elements to consider before making this decision. Musterd dedicated devices are designed to work in harsh environments; they’re ruggedised, waterproof and have good battery power. These devices are delivered with the Musterd App pre-installed, along with a mobile management app which allows us to remotely monitor the status of the device, and to restrict other apps from being loaded on to the device.


What happens if I lose power and/or network?

  • Musterd is designed to cope with this. All devices communicate directly with our cloud-based solution. When Musterd is deployed as part of an integrated solution (eg. with access control) information is passed and stored in the Musterd database. In the event of an evacuation and disruption to your infrastructure, Musterd devices have every event stored right up until the time of power or data being lost. Musterd devices work over WiFi, but in the event that WiFi becomes unavailable, the devices will switch straight over to mobile data.

Is my data secure?

  • Our hosted Musterd System is protected within a secure Microsoft Azure Data Centre, located in the EU. We do not require sensitive personal data. As for GDPR considerations, we rely on Article 6 (1)(d) of the General Data Protection Regulations, which provides a lawful basis for processing data where “processing is necessary in order to protect the vital interests of the data subject or of another natural person”.

Can we host the application ourselves?

  • Yes. Musterd is a web-based evacuation management solution which can be hosted in a private cloud on even on-premises as alternatives to our default Microsoft Azure Platform. Whatever your IT requirements, we are able to provide you with a solution.

How do I find out more?

Feel free to contact us or visit our website: -

Tel: +44 (0) 1993 878 671
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