What’s unfolding in Japan is truly horrifying. The magnitude 9.0 earthquake, which hit off the Oshika Peninsula, is the largest earthquake to hit Japan in recorded history and one of the largest in the world since records began. The earthquake has triggered tsunamis, which have hit coastal areas of Japan.
Like many, Esri is endeavouring to do what it can to assist the disaster stricken country. Esri is working closely with both domestic and international agencies to provide on-site personnel, GIS software expertise, and project services. Esri is also providing organisations with software, data, imagery, and technical support.
The Japan Incident Map aims to disseminate information widely, inform the general public of the worst hit areas, and facilitate recovery planning. People can follow events in near real time using the application to gain a greater understanding of the situation. It includes links to news reports as well as Tweets, YouTube videos, and Flickr photos. It also gives people the ability to view streets, satellite imagery, and topographic maps as part of the map overlay. Map layers are being added over time as more data becomes available.
GIS solutions are helping emergency workers over there use critical information to make rapid, effective decisions. The technology helps responders conduct rescue operations, prioritise medical needs, identify severely damaged areas, measure impacts to critical infrastructure, locate areas suitable for food and water distribution, and more.
Agencies assisting in the disaster response effort can take advantage of maps, data, software, and web services available online through the Esri website .