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How Switching to WebEOC SaaS Is Helping a Nuclear Power Provider Improve Safety

The company’s IT department has opened a new door by moving away from internal hosting of WebEOC, presenting the emergency management office with an exciting opportunity for growth and innovation.

In a dramatic turn of events, Constellation Energy’s Emergency Response Organization (ERO) faced a technological crossroads when their IT department revealed a critical issue: the inability to continue hosting their pivotal WebEOC system in-house. This revelation prompted an urgent quest for a robust solution. The decision to partner with Juvare and migrate to a cloud-based WebEOC SaaS was not just a strategic pivot—it was a leap into future-proofing emergency management across their extensive network of nuclear plants, underscoring a bold commitment to innovation and safety.

Baltimore-based Constellation Energy owns and operates dozens of power plants across the U.S., including a fleet of 12 nuclear plants whose combined annual output of 19,000 megawatts makes the company the largest provider of nuclear-generated electricity in America.

Within the company’s nuclear unit, the Emergency Response Organization (ERO) oversees and manages any emergencies that might affect its nuclear plants. The ERO has a presence at each plant, as well as three stand-alone facilities.

For years, the ERO relied on Juvare’s WebEOC solution to help carry out its mission, hosting the platform on internal company servers. The ERO used WebEOC at all its facilities and trained every emergency responder in its use.

The ERO received an important update from the IT department, signaling a shift in how WebEOC is hosted due to server constraints. This pivotal moment has spurred the ERO to explore alternative solutions, presenting an avenue for innovation and enhanced operational efficiency. Constellation’s management agreed and recognized the imperative need to transition their software hosting to Juvare, diverging from the traditional setup.

Turning a Challenge into an Opportunity

Facing a pivotal moment, Constellation Energy’s Emergency Response Organization (ERO) embraced the transition to Juvare’s WebEOC SaaS as a gateway to innovation. Confronted with the challenges of keeping their system up-to-date, limited collaboration due to on-premises hosting, and dissatisfaction with their existing emergency notification system, they saw a silver lining. Opting for WebEOC SaaS on AWS meant not just enhanced security and a superior cloud experience, but also the integration of crucial WebEOC Alerts. Corporate Emergency Preparedness Manager Christina Nelson highlighted the comprehensive benefits and Juvare’s reputation as key decision drivers, marking a strategic leap towards a more resilient and collaborative future.

Although changing from self-hosted to Juvare WebEOC SaaS would be a transition, the ERO soon realized that the challenge might be an opportunity in disguise.

Constellation faced three main challenges. First, the ERO prized WebEOC; however, due to internal restraints and dependence on the IT department, Constellation had difficulty keeping the software up to date. Second, the on-premises nature of its WebEOC instance prevented the ERO from collaborating fully with its industry partners, most of whom use the Juvare-hosted version of WebEOC. Constellation found an opportunity to combine two EP systems offered by one vendor.

As with all opportunities, there are choices that needed to be made. The ERO had the opportunity to upgrade to WebEOC SaaS hosted in AWS with enhanced security, an upgraded cloud experience different from generalized cloud hosting, and a move that would also allow it to implement WebEOC Alerts.

Alternately, it could head off in a completely new direction with a new vendor. 

What did the company decide? 

“We chose to move to WebEOC in the cloud,” says Corporate Emergency Preparedness Project Lead, Dave Draghi.

When asked to explain the main driver for the decision, Draghi says, “It wasn’t one thing, it was everything. We know from experience that Juvare is a very good company to work with.”

Juvare’s Support is “Outstanding”

“Constellations Change Management for software systems like this, is a lengthy process including IT, Cyber Security, Supply & Legal reviews. With Juvares cooperation through this selection process, Constellation found the software solution it needed for the future and the project team took over from there. The project team received the necessary training from Juvare to navigate the new environment, build our new WebEOC boards, and configure the software to suite the needs of our ERO. The shift to the new platform has had it’s challenges,” Draghi acknowledges, “and throughout the process Juvare worked with us to ensure we had the product we needed to be successful” says Draghi.

But Juvare “made the move as easy as possible,” he says.

“As far as Juvare’s support goes, they’ve been outstanding. They provided our cyber team and our legal team with absolutely everything that they needed in a timely manner. From a vendor perspective, I can’t think of a single thing that encumbered our ability to transfer to a new system.”

WebEOC SaaS Eliminates Inherited Pain Points

With the successful deployment of Juvare’s WebEOC SaaS, Constellation Energy’s ERO is set to resolve longstanding challenges. This transition ensures access to the latest WebEOC enhancements, enhances collaboration across the nuclear sector, and integrates a more efficient emergency notification system. Beyond resolving these issues, the switch promises broader benefits, including 24/7 technical support, reduced IT overhead, custom display board creation, industry-wide data sharing, and significantly improved security and transparency. Ultimately, these advancements are expected to substantially elevate safety protocols, ensuring rapid information sharing and enhancing the protection of public and worker safety during nuclear emergencies.

Now that Constellation’s WebEOC Project Team has completed its implementation and bootcamp trainings for WebEOC have been conducted, the ERO has begun looking forward to the elimination of its three longtime issues.

  • For starters, the ERO will always be using the latest version of WebEOC and can take advantage of all the enhancements immediately.
  • In addition, the change to WebEOC SaaS will allow the ERO to work more closely with its partners across the nuclear industry. “This is the exact same system used by all the other nuclear stakeholders,” says Draghi. “Going to the Juvare WebEOC SaaS opens up great opportunities to share with our outside partners and entities.”
  • “Finally, the new software includes the WebEOC Alerts notification system. This will allow us to combine two vendors into an existing contract and call it one,” says Draghi.

Additional Benefits and One Overarching Gain

Beyond simply eliminating old pain points, Juvare WebEOC SaaS is expected to bring many other significant benefits to the ERO, Constellation, and the communities they serve. Dave Draghi anticipates that the following gains will be especially valuable:
  • The ERO will be able to access 24/7 technical support from Juvare for its WebEOC SaaS instance.
  • Constellation’s IT department will no longer have to expend resources maintaining WebEOC servers and software.
  • The ERO will be able to work with Juvare and build WebEOC display boards customized for use with Constellation’s nuclear fleet.
  • The ERO will be able to participate in the project currently underway between Juvare and other nuclear stakeholders to develop common WebEOC Boards for use throughout the nuclear industry.
  • The ERO will see gains in transparency, timeliness, and record-keeping.
  • The company will enjoy the world-class enhanced security of cloud redundancy and backups.
  • ERO field monitoring units will gain the ability to share attachments (such as CSV files showing radiation levels) with the entire response team.
Collectively, the benefits of switching to Juvare WebEOC SaaS will contribute to one overarching gain: an improvement in safety. “The sharing of information to our internal and external entities is important to everyone in a nuclear emergency,” says Draghi. By making this process easier and faster, WebEOC SaaS will improve safety across Constellation’s entire nuclear fleet. “What WebEOC provides us is timely information,” Draghi explains. “The ability to instantly share that information with everyone involved in the response effort and improve our ability to protect the safety and health of the public, plant workers, and potentially save the plant.

Moving Forward and Doing More

With the initial phase of WebEOC SaaS implementation wrapping up, the ERO is already plotting future enhancements, including mobile integration, the activation of WebEOC Alerts, and deeper collaboration across the nuclear energy sector. Discussions are also underway about extending WebEOC’s application to other energy domains within Constellation. This strategic pivot from onprem to cloud-based operations, once a forced move, is now celebrated as a significant victory.

Corporate Emergency Preparedness Project Lead, Dave Draghi views the transition as a catalyst for innovation, offering newfound capabilities and enthusiasm for the enhanced system.

As the first phase of ERO’s rollout of WebEOC SaaS nears completion, the team has begun looking forward to steps they plan to take in the future. These include developing a mobile capability, bringing WebEOC Alerts online, and working more closely with their emergency response colleagues at other nuclear power companies.

ERO staff have also been involved in conversations at Constellation about possibly expanding the use case for WebEOC beyond the nuclear side, to the company’s hydroelectric, fossil-fuel, and other plants.

As far as the ERO is concerned, it’s now clear that the IT’s department’s decision to withdraw support for on-prem WebEOC was a blessing in disguise.

“IT’s decision turned out to be a win, win, win,” says Draghi. “Web EOC SAAS is giving us options we didnt have before. Our EP Staff and Leadership is excited about the new WebEOC software and it’s potential. We’re going to be able to do much more with this newer software version and are excited for the future.”

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