Remotely Sensed Images for Flood Monitoring: Lessons Learned from the 2011 Midwestern US Floods

Monday, 15 December 2014
Ramesh Sivanpillai, University of Wyoming, Laramie, WY, United States
Remotely sensed images acquired by the member agencies of the International Charter on Space and Major Disasters (Charter Call ID# 362) in response to the 2011 Midwestern US Floods provided valuable information to first responders in several states along the Mississippi River. Economic damages were estimated to exceed 2 billion USD. Images collected by optical and RADAR sensors on satellites operated by seven countries, along with archived satellite imagery were rapidly processed and provided to first-responders in these states for planning relief efforts. This operation required collaboration among numerous international, national and local agencies, and data vendors. This presentation will share the experiences gained as the project manager of this activation and will highlight the Charter’s role in requesting satellite imagery for disasters, identifying experts to process these data, and getting the information to first responders in a timely manner. Lessons learned in terms of addressing the needs of first responders from multi-state agencies will also be highlighted.