Geographic information systems are key for tornado-relief efforts

05/31/2011 | Times Daily (Florence, Ala.)

Rescue and relief workers in Franklin County, Ala., used sophisticated geographic information tools to help coordinate their work after tornadoes struck. A "Google Earth"-like interface let geographers map the storm's journey, assess damage reports from aerial surveys and GPS-equipped mobile units, and provide key data to agencies such as the Red Cross and the FBI. "The sooner these guys have information in hand, the sooner they provide relief," said Michael Hughes, the county's GIS manager.

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Times Daily (Florence, Ala.)

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