Hurricane Florence impact revealed in Nearmap aerial imagery

October 4, 2018  - By 0 Comments

Newly captured aerial maps show before and after images to support cleanup efforts by public safety organizations, utility companies and insurance agencies.

Aerial mapping company Nearmap has flown and captured aerial imagery in the areas in North and South Carolina impacted by Hurricane Florence.

The imagery is already supporting the extensive cleanup and reconstruction efforts for public safety, utility companies, insurance agencies and numerous contractors in many industries.

High-resolution captures from the Wilmington and Myrtle Beach areas are now online and available for immediate use with more areas scheduled to come online over the next several days.

The post-hurricane coverage includes about 4,530 square kilometers around the coastline from Newport, N.C., to Myrtle Beach, S.C., covering a population of about 752,000 people.

High-resolution imagery shows the impact of Hurricane Florence at Southport, North Carolina, comparing September 2017 to September 2018. (Image: Nearmap)

High-resolution imagery shows the impact of Hurricane Florence at Southport, North Carolina, comparing September 2017 to September 2018. (Image: Nearmap)

Before the hurricane, Nearmap had already covered more than 30,000 square kilometers in North and South Carolina with ortho imagery and more than 12,000 square kilometers with oblique imagery. With previous aerial maps taken at least once a year totaling over 140,000 square kilometers online, some of them dating back to 2014, users are able to compare current imagery with historical photos.

“A key element to the recovery efforts is having access not only to high-resolution imagery from after the storm, but also to historical aerial captures from before the storm hit,” said Rob Newman, CEO and managing director of Nearmap. “Historical captures provide consistency and contrast, enabling crews to look at the current truth on the ground and compare it to previous time periods to help assess the damage along the coastlines.”

All pre- and post-hurricane imagery can be accessed through a standard web browser using Nearmap’s MapBrowser, through Nearmap partners or via APIs to integrate with common GIS, CAD and other applications.

All the Nearmap pre- and post-hurricane imagery is published at sub-3-inch ground sampling distance, which allows users to see great detail on the ground. At this resolution, they can clearly identify important ground conditions such as roof blow-off, property damage and flooding. The same is true for streets and all other ground features, providing details for users to complete analysis both pre and post storms.

“Our thoughts are with the residents of North and South Carolina recently impacted by the hurricane,” Newman said. “We are pleased that Nearmap customers are using our imagery to help restore these neighborhoods, and help residents fix and rebuild after rooftop, flooding and other damage.”

Nearmap customers use aerial imagery to assist in the following aspects of post-disaster cleanup:

  • Public Safety: Access to immediate, crystal-clear aerial imagery of areas affected by storm damage for emergency response routing and safety.
  • Utilities: View all areas where above-ground utilities have been affected and also see where infrastructure is down or damaged and causing hazards.
  • Reconstruction Efforts: Compare historical image captures with post-event imagery to see structure elements and provide proper measurements to rebuild.
  • Insurance: View impacted properties to see first-hand damage and potential structural damage.
Tracy Cozzens

About the Author:

Tracy Cozzens has served as managing editor of GPS World magazine since 2006. She also is editor of GPS World’s newsletters and the sister website Geospatial Solutions. She has worked in government, for non-profits, and in corporate communications, editing a variety of publications for audiences ranging from federal government contractors to teachers.

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