Fulcrum for Hurricane Response

01 May 2013 by Andie Dodd

The offline capabilities, efficient team collaboration, and flexibility of Fulcrum can be easily leveraged for Hurricane preparation, response, and relief efforts. Hurricane preparation requires plenty of data collection, and Fulcrum is a great, cost efficient alternative to other GPS equipment. Just as the Uganda Red Cross deployed Fulcrum to take surveys for disaster preparation, Fulcrum can easily be used for similar, hurricane specific preparation surveys. In addition, Fulcrum can be used for collecting infrastructure information, documenting homes for insurance purposes before a storm, shelter assessment, and so much more.

Hurricane Frances

After a hurricane, Fulcrum can be quickly deployed to the field with minimal training and preparation; and since most people have smart phones or tablets anyway, there’s no need to obtain any equipment — and the “bring your own device” model that crisis response agencies need becomes a reality. Fulcrum users (whether organization employees or responders and volunteers) can be in the field reporting damage the minute a storm has passed, even if cellular networks are down, in a “no-comms” environment. Data collected pre-storm, coupled with post-storm damage information can greatly aid in relief efforts. Fulcrum allows for data upload in real time, so someone sitting at a relief organization’s HQ can be monitoring the damage as soon as field users sync their collected data.

Since we are located in Florida, we know what it means to prepare for a hurricane. Many of us are Florida natives and have seen our share of storms. A few of our staff members even have some experience with relief efforts. I spent two weeks volunteering at a shelter after Charley hit my county while I was in high school, doing whatever I could to help those displaced by the storm, while my father helped remove debris from homes in our community. In addition, Coleman worked with the Florida Department of Transportation’s Emergency Management group to map signage and markings for hurricane evacuation routes throughout West Florida, a critical element in effectively preparing for hurricane impact.

Next week, we’ll be in booth 605 at the Florida Governor’s Hurricane Conference in Ft. Lauderdale, Wednesday 5/8 and Thursday 5/9. If you’re attending, be sure to stop by for a demo to see a field solution ready for rapid and effective deployment. We will be happy to answer any questions you may have about Fulcrum and how to make use of it before and after a hurricane.

We have a few sample apps built for hurricane specific use. These apps can be found in our App Gallery under the hurricane tag.

(photo credit: roger4336)

About the author

Andie worked on analytics and GIS projects, as a geographer at Spatial Networks. Also a self proclaimed ‘tea snob’ in an office full of coffee drinkers.

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