GIS in Emergency Management

I recently presented at the 2013 Emergency Preparedness and Hazmat Response Conference in Baltimore. Here is a link to access the presentation (apologies for the large download):

GIS in the EOC

Abstract:

Since maps have been printed out on the EOC walls, GIS has played a large role within the Emergency Operations Center. In this workshop we will review some of the latest trends of how technology, GIS in particular, is adapting to better help the Emergency Manager in today’s EOC. We will also provide you with actionable steps for adopting mobile devices, for organizing GIS data before an event, and in selecting new cloud-based applications coming out in today’s market.

Resource List included some Esri training:

Policy:
DHS GeoCONOPS

Procedures:
NAPSG Standard Operation Guide

Training:
FEMA’s GIS Analyst Position Qualifications
FEMA Course:  GIS for Emergency Management
Esri ArcGIS Online Training

Applications:
FEMA HAZUS
FEMA GeoPlatform
Census Language Mapper

When I was working at FEMA, we were trying to get language data from the US Census to overlay onto the Emergency Management GIS applications.  FEMA Teams would go into areas unknowing what languages folks spoke, which, of course, caused problems.

Emergency Management GIS:  Language Map

Language Mapper from US Census

Well, last week the Census just released a new mapping application that maps languages spoken and it is awesome.  The mapping data randomly places a dot for every 75 people (or so) that speaks a language you select, providing a geographic representation of where different languages are spoken in your community.  It’s best used to understand the distribution of language spoken at a county level, good stuff to include in your Emergency Management GIS operations.  Understanding actual counts is more problematic unless you use a geography of a county or greater. Continue Reading