Every major broadcast network has hour-by-hour hurricane updates, but social media is still the best source of information for communicating and receiving information in real-time. With 4,749 Twitter mentions/hour of hashtag #Sandy, the social network provides an abundant amount of information quickly and efficiently. And even more importantly, you can get these alerts on the go, no matter where you are!
Here are the most-influential sites to visit:
The site pulls in all weather-related tweets based on one’s geographic location. Site visitors customize the Twitter dashboard by filling in their zip code after which they receive relevant tweets. The site also shows users which state has generated the greatest amount of tweets and allows users to click on each state to see the specific tweets within that location. The site also has updates on flight statuses within specific locations.
This interactive site allows visitors to look up the Hurricane Sandy forecast with their zip codes and track the storm’s current & projected paths. The site projects three different views of the hurricane: map, satellite and radar.
NASA demonstrates animated satellite imagery over the last two days, tracking Hurricane Sandy’s move from the Bahamas into the U.S. eastern seaboard. NASA satellites provide forecasters at the National Hurricane Center with infrared, visible, cloud height, temperature and rainfall data as Sandy continues to affect the U.S. East Coast.
For those of you who have kids at home, Sesame Street has compiled a series of videos, tips and activities that can help young children learn more about hurricanes and natural disasters, help them feel safe, and cope with emotions.
Google just launched an interactive crisis map that shows NYC residents evacuation zones, Red Cross emergency shelters, public alerts, traffic conditions, and links to other authoritative storm resources.
Top Twitter accounts to follow:
- @fema: The official Twitter feed of Federal Emergency Management Agency
- @MTAInsider: The official Twitter feed of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority of the State of New York
- @NYGovCuomo – Official Twitter account for the Governor of New York State
- @redcrossny – Official twitter stream of the American Red Cross Greater NY Region; serving NYC, LI, Lower Hudson Valley & Greenwich, Ct.
- @twc_hurricane: The Weather Channel’s all-hurricane tweets
- @NASA: Lovely satellite photos and animations of not-so-lovely storm
- @breakingstorm: Real-time severe weather updates
For a complete list of accounts to follow, subscribe to the #Sandy Twitter List: https://twitter.com/femaregion2/new-york-state-sandy/members
Top Twitter Hashtags to follow:- s
Must-have mobile apps:
- Hurricane by American Red Cross (available via iTunes or Google Play): Includes real-time storm monitoring, locations of open Red Cross shelter, simple steps and checklists people can use to create a family emergency plan, preloaded content that gives users instant access to critical action steps even without mobile connectivity, toolkit with flashlight, strobe light and audible alarm, and badges users can earn through interactive quizzes and share on social networks
- FEMA (available via iTunes, Blackberry App World or Google Play): This app contains preparedness information for different types of disasters, an interactive checklist for emergency kits, a section to play emergency meeting locations, etc.
Stay safe everyone!