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article imageGoogle maps to provide earthquake tracking service

By Tim Sandle     yesterday in Technology
Live in an area here there is an earthquake risk? Not sure when to travel? No need to be concerned, Google has an app for that - or at least an adaptation of Google Maps.
Google has stepped up its service provision to help those in times of crisis. The company is to provide more visual information in the event of natural disasters like earthquakes. A new feature centered on crisis information has been made available on Google Maps from June 6th. Among the enhanced features is the facility to view earthquake shakemaps. The addition is being rolled out, worldwide, across Android, iOS, desktop, and mobile web platforms. The update also provide information about floods and hurricanes.
The aim of the feature is for users to gain valuable information once an earthquake strikes. By tapping on the crisis card function on Maps, this will bring up an earthquake’s shakemap. This is a visual image that provides detail of the earthquake's epicenter and magnitude. In addition, there will be color coding indicators to chart how intense the shaking was in different areas, stemming out from the epicenter.
According to CNET, if someone is in navigation mode, Google will alert the person if their route is affected by a disaster. The user will also be able to share their location and see road closures.
The aim is provide real-time data for people, to enable them to quickly assess the actual and potential reach the earthquake and subsequent after-shocks. By using the feature it is hoped that those travelling in can either avoid going in or navigate safely, and those caught up in the aftermath of the earthquake can spot those areas likely to have experienced the highest impact (or subsequent impact) and avoid them.
Speaking with the Weather Network about the application of the new feature to Canada, Alexandra Klein of Google Canada says: "Often times when an earthquake hits, there’s concern about where to go, areas for safety and within Google Maps this will show Canadians how to do that." Some 4,000 earthquakes occur every year in Canada.
More about Earthquakes, Google, Google maps, Geology
 
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