The Philippines has become increasingly susceptible to flooding during tropical cyclones, putting people and their livelihoods at risk. Even light rain showers can raise water levels, threatening to cut off roads, and bringing transportation to a standstill. This is why Google is launching Flood Alerts, to help identify risk areas and provide timely information to Filipinos.
As part of Google’s Public Alerts, launched last year in the Philippines, Flood Alerts will automatically notify users with flood advisories based on detected location in high-risk areas. The alerts will appear on Google Search, Google Maps, and Google Now, and can also be accessed through the Google Public Alerts page on www.google.org/publicalerts.
“Preparation is key. Google recognizes that one of the best ways to reach people is by using online tools that make critical information, like flood alerts, available to them in the most immediate way possible,” said Gail Tan, head of communications and public affairs of Google Philippines.
Google is able to provide Public Alerts in the Philippines thanks to the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA). Their commitment to providing information to the public enables Google and others to make critical and life-saving notifications more widely available.
“Publishing PAGASA flood information on the Google Public Alerts platform enables us to reach many more members of the community at critical times. This complements our existing communications channels, enabling us to further protect lives, livelihoods and reduce damage to properties together by making potentially life-saving information more widely available,” said Vicente B. Malano, Acting Administrator of PAGASA.
Flood Alerts is part of Google Crisis Response, which seeks to make critical information more accessible around natural disasters and humanitarian crises. Recognizing that people turn to the Internet in crises, this includes making emergency alerts, news updates and donation opportunities visible through Google’s web properties.