By Ma. Cristina Arayata
MANILA — The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology will soon launch four applications (apps) in relation to disaster risk reduction and mitigation.
In an interview with the Philippine News Agency (PNA) on Tuesday, Phivolcs director Renato Solidum said these apps are the GeoMapper-Exposure Data Mapper, GeoMapper-Situation Data Mapper, Geo Analytics, and HazardHunter PH.
These were developed under the GeoRiskPhilippines Initiative project of DOST.
Solidum said that basically, this project, which runs from 2018-2020, is a geographic information system (GIS) that integrates hazard maps, exposure data, and have these accessed by the public and government agencies.
“The apps were already developed. But the data are still to be contributed,” he clarified.
From August 2018 to July 2019, the DOST has allotted PHP24 million for this project. Solidum said a big chunk of this amount was used to buy computers and software.
Among the four apps, only the HazardHunter would be accessible to the public, as the other three were made for government agencies’ use, according to Solidum.
HazardHunter will be launched on July 16, and this can be accessed either through a computer or mobile phone.
This app would help people know if their location is at risk for volcanic eruptions, tsunamis, and other hazards. Phivolc’s fault finder is also included in this app.
The HazardHunter is also helpful for businesses or those planning to put up establishments, since they would find if the area they are eyeing is at risk. One may type the location in the app to know if it is a hazard area, Solidum said.
The three other apps were made for government use, as they target to collect exposure data. The GeoMapper-Situation Data Mapper, for instance, will be used by the Office of Civil Defense.
“We will collect exposure data and send this to proper authorities to assess the hazard,” Solidum said.
The GeoRisk platform, he said, can be accessed by government agencies. They could find Phivolcs’ hazard map there and also send data.
These apps provide a very specific location point. “Not all facilities are properly located, like for example in Google, you could only see a flag to locate a school. Our app could locate a specific building in a school compound,” he said.
“The school principal, therefore, should locate and describe the facilities they have so we could add this to our data,” Solidum explained. (PNA)