Meet The Women Leading Tech: Fire & Rescue NSW’s Katherine Tuinman Neal

Meet The Women Leading Tech: Fire & Rescue NSW’s Katherine Tuinman Neal

Just because the Women Leading Tech awards were postponed until September, doesn’t mean we can’t talk about the talent we saw in the entries.

As Australia battled some of the worst bushfires ever seen this summer, it was not just firefighters and volunteers controlling the situation.

Behind the scenes, data scientists were also working to develop technology for Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS).

One of these data scientists was Katherine Tuinman Neal, who currently works as a data systems GIS officer with Fire & Rescue NSW.

Here she uses cutting-edge technology to develop 2D & 3D models of bushfire affected areas for rapid damage assessments.

Tuinman Neal has led the development of data driven insights combining Aerial Drone capabilities with business intelligence software to create rapid damage assessments including identification of dangerous substances (such as asbestos) where a structure once stood. 

Until the development of this technology the collation of data and the analysis of large bushfire affected areas would take many months to complete. Using this technology the process can be completed in 1-2 days. 

Regarded by her colleagues as a ‘go to’ person for applying data-powered technologies, Tuinman Neal has also put her efforts into improving diversity and inclusion in the space.

She actively works to promote technology among other females – both firefighters and corporate staff – to empower these colleagues in a male dominated profession.




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