How Big Data Assists in Disaster Relief and Preparedness



Can Rivers Cause Earthquakes? (image credit: Getty Images Full story:

China Focus: China tackles disasters with better emergency response system

Four hours after a magnitude-5.7 earthquake damaged his house, Hong Kaishi was evacuated to a safe place and given a quilt, bedsheet and bowl of steaming hot noodles. The relocation site provided temporary shelter, medical services and electricity for more than 200 villagers who suffered losses after an earthquake jolted Xingwen County, southwest China’s Sichuan Province, and injured 17 people Sunday. Governments at all levels have responded quickly to the disaster. Emergency responses at national and local levels were immediately activated. The Ministry of Emergency Management sent a working team to guide and assist rescue work. The county established a disaster relief center to coordinate rescue efforts…


How Big Data Assists in Disaster Relief and Preparedness

Historically, public policies have proved ineffective in providing adequate help for disaster-stricken citizens. A year after hurricane Harvey in 2017, for example, residents are still in the midst of recovery despite $15.3 billion earmarked for relief efforts. With the emergence of new innovations, one wonders if legislators should give more thought to incorporating Big Data technologies into aiding in disaster prediction and relief. Over the last two decades, remarkable innovations such as the Internet of things (IoT) have entered the mainstream. While the intensity of natural disasters is increasing, advances in communications because of this technology has greatly reduced casualties and injuries. For instance, agencies such as NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) leveraged big data technology to predict hurricane Harvey’s landfall and coordinate emergency response personnel…


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