Drones can help speed Amphan Cyclone Recovery
Updated: May 21, 2020
Cyclone Amphan’s devastating impact in the Indian Sub-Continent on 20th May 2020 was yet another reminder of the massive threat tropical storms pose to life and property.
Warming oceans and a changing climate raise the possibility of dangerous tropical storms becoming more powerful and more frequent, making coastal areas much more vulnerable to flooding and storm damage. James P. Kossin in this study says the trend is there and is real.
While proper planning and risk management before the event is essential, new technology tools like drones, thermal imaging and artificial intelligence (AI) can significantly help to speed up the recovery process after this devastating storm.
Deploying for Disaster Response
Drones act as first responders and can assist to identify flooding, washed-out dams, damaged bridges or more.
An immediate post cyclone disaster response drone programme allows for:
> Collection of video and imagery of the damage
> Live streaming of video back to the control center
> Help determine where to allocate emergency responders and recovery responses
> Identify safe routes of access for ground-based repair missions
Surveying Damage on Critical Infrastructure
Some ways drones can be used for disaster relief by utilities are:
> Surveying Damage of Railroad Tracks
> Evaluating Oil & Gas Pipelines
> Assess damage to roads, bridges and water treatment plants
> Evaluating Telecom Tower Damage
Drone based aerial intelligence helps:
> Make data available to take quick and immediate decisions
> Reduce the number of dangerous missions
> Enable you to manage resources during emergency response
> Results in faster fixes
> Increases the margin of safety
This article on Drones being used by WFP at Mozambique as Cyclone Desmond stormed in on January, 2019 expands the importance of using Drones to collect real time data to generate aerial maps which are used significantly to support humanitarian operations in the area.
Assess crop damage for Assistance and Insurance Claims
AI on Aerial Images and maps help generate automated location points along with images of crop damage which provide much required insights to law enforcement officials, central and state government agencies to ensure equitable distribution of crop damage assistance packages and claims.
Mobilizing to act while under Lockdown - Coronavirus
Drones can be helpful as a tool to enable various users with critical data at the time of need. Under the current country wide lockdown imposed in India to combat the Coronavirus, DGCA vide Notice No. AV-22011/2/2020-SDnIT-MoCA is allowing for conditional exemption to Government Entities for COVID-19 related RPAS operations.
DGCA has also launched a Web Portal - GARUD ("Government Authorisation for Relief Using Drones") portal to assist Government entities in seeking exemption from Government of India.
Pictures are from GD Block, Salt Lake City, Kolkata clicked on 21st May - Morning Post Amphan Cyclone
Watch our blog to read more about FS's use of drones