Google has announced that its Flood Hub platform has been expanded to serve 80 nations worldwide, including the addition of eight new African countries.
According to Nosa Iyamu, the public relations officer of a digital marketing agency in Nigeria, this growth is part of AI-enabled initiatives to address the destructive effects of floods and provide essential assistance to vulnerable communities.
In an effort to improve flood preparedness even further, Google announced plans to increase flood alerts through Search and Maps notifications, ensuring that people have easy access to timely and vital flood information.
This extension intends to enable more people to take the required steps in order to protect lives and property.
According to Yossi Mattias, vice president of engineering and research and crisis response team, “We recognise the significant impact that floods have on communities worldwide, especially in regions with limited resources and vulnerable populations.”
“We are committed to expanding the reach of the Flood Hub platform to support these communities and provide accurate flood forecasting that can help save lives and protect livelihoods,” he continued.
Also, the Flood Hub platform now offers forecasts up to 7 days in advance, benefitting a population of 460 million people globally. This expansion extends the reach of Flood Hub’s valuable services to countries such as Brazil, Nigeria, Pakistan and Thailand.
The statement read in part, “Flood Hub platform has been available in several African countries prior to this expansion, including Angola, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ghana, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Liberia, Malawi, Namibia, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, South Sudan, South Africa, and now, with the expansion, it encompasses 60 additional countries.
“These new countries include Burundi, Eswatini, Guinea Bissau, Lesotho, Madagascar, Rwanda, Senegal, and Zimbabwe. The inclusion of these countries ensures that a broader range of African communities facing high flood risk and extreme weather conditions can benefit from Flood Hub’s accurate and timely flood forecasting services,” the statement continued.
According to reports, floods claim tens of thousands of lives and cause billions of dollars in damages each year across the world.
The impacts are particularly severe in low-resource regions that often lack effective early warning systems.
Google stated that by providing powerful flood forecasting tools to governments, humanitarian organizations, and individuals, “Flood Hub empowers communities to take proactive measures and make informed decisions to reduce the devastating effects of floods.”
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