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Crisis Management and GIS at the Local Level Using GIS in the Recovery of the April 27 th Tornadoes.

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Presentation on theme: "Crisis Management and GIS at the Local Level Using GIS in the Recovery of the April 27 th Tornadoes."— Presentation transcript:

1 Crisis Management and GIS at the Local Level Using GIS in the Recovery of the April 27 th Tornadoes

2 Franklin County GIS Consortium Our GIS Capabilities are a result of local cooperation through the formation of a GIS consortium The member agencies that make up this consortium are as follows – Franklin County Highway Department – Franklin County E911/EMA – Franklin County Revenue Commission – Franklin County Water – Franklin County EDA – Cities of Russellville, Red Bay, Hodges, Phil Campbell, Vina – Russellville Electric – Red Bay Water & Gas – Northwest Alabama Gas – Phil Campbell Water

3 Day of the Storm Search and rescue efforts at the forefront Clearing roadways GIS wasnt discussed until late into the night Confusion about the path and number of storms

4 Mapping the Path The path of the tornado was mapped with GPS Almost every map printed included the path All analysis from that point forward involved this polygon

5 Post-storm Imagery Maps and analysis depended on accurate, hi-resolution ortho-imagery of the affected areas Fortunately, The Atlantic Group, Inc. answered the call and delivered Currently there is no mechanism in place for the acquisition of post disaster ortho-imagery

6 Structure Damage Assessment Acquired GPS locations, photographed, and assessed every structure in and around the tornado path Developed a system for rating the severity of damage Information gathered played a critical role in providing FEMA with a very accurate preliminary cost estimate

7 Debris Volume GPS units were used to locate and document debris throughout the path Very accurate cost estimates were prepared based on this information GIS allowed color-coding of streets based on volume of debris Cleanup operations were much more organized, allowing for a quicker recovery

8 Cleansweep Program Local agencies, by contract or force account, were allowed to clean up debris on private property under very strict guidelines GIS was a critical tool in the assessment of the individual properties, as required by FEMA

9 Dozens of Maps We were inundated with requests for maps and data by state and federal agencies including – FEMA – Homeland Security – AEMA – FBI – Red Cross

10 Web Application Overwhelmed by requests for maps, we asked for help in the development of a GIS web application 3-GIS, LLC of Decatur answered the call and provided a fantastic web based solution for the duration of the disaster recovery

11 Maps and Data for Mitigation Grant Applications A percentage of all recovery costs are set aside to mitigate recurring losses These funds generally provide individuals, public and private organizations 75% of the costs for items such as generators, storm shelters, radios, etc. GIS played a critical role in the quick and accurate development of maps and information, necessary to complete mitigation applications

12 Helping Neighboring Counties In discussions with our neighboring counties in the immediate aftermath of the storm, we realized that we could offer help in the form of GIS application. Fortunately, the leadership in those counties accepted our offer. These counties had good basemap data but no operational data Helped assimilate the data and provided maps and analysis as needed We provided training and assistance for the gathering of field data using handheld GPS units

13 Hackleburg Water System One employee knows the location of all valves and meters He is injured and unable to help Water tank is losing water

14 Lessons Learned Local cooperation is essential Regional cooperation is essential Statewide cooperation is essential Need a mechanism for purchasing post disaster ortho-imagery Dont allow bureaucratic red tape and contingencies to inhibit your response Just do it!!!

15 Going Forward The storms of April 27 th have created an awareness of the importance and value of GIS and its applications Elected officials at all levels are now poised to move forward with an unprecedented cooperative GIS effort GIS leaders across the state must take advantage of this opportunity Local GIS consortiums are essential to the success of a concerted GIS effort The formation of regional GIS divisions, headed by a division GIS Manager, acting as a liaison between the state and local governments is also essential

16 Regional Cooperation

17 And last but not least, let us all rise above silly political differences and prejudices and support a fearless leader in this Great State of Alabama!! In his quest for a 14 th National Championship!!!

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