Tuesday, October 30, 2012

A Map for Every Story: Oct. 27 2012 Tsunami in Hawaii

On October 27, 2012, a magnitude 7.7 earthquake off the west coast of Canada triggered a tsunami warning in Hawaii.  Residents and visitors in tsunami evacuation areas were warned to evacuate to higher ground.  For visitors in hotels, this usually meant moving to a higher floor.  For many residents it meant going to a family or friend's home outside the evacuation area.

HPD Facebook page
For those on Oahu needing a safe place to go, the City and County of Honolulu established 26 Tsunami Refuge Centers.  This information was shared with the public in list form.  The list looked like this on the HPD Facebook page:

Certainly a map can help with this story.  A map showing each of the refuge centers.  A map that could be opened on a desktop, tablet or smartphone.  A map that could show the refuge centers around a user's location. A map app that could be developed quickly.

It took me about one hour.  I used ArcGIS Online and created a web map combining map services from the City and County of Honolulu along with data points for the refuge centers.  I made several copies of this web map, each zoomed in on a different area on Oahu.  I then created an ArcGIS Online group and gallery for the web maps.

The gallery is still online.
You can view it at this link:

Oct 27, 2012 Oahu Tsunami Refuge Center Maps

I used Twitter to share links to the gallery and to each of the regional maps using the #hitsunami hashtag that was used during the event.  Interestingly, though maybe not surprisingly, the regional map links were re-tweeted more than the gallery link.

The first wave arrived at 10:28 pm (22:28) local time.  Fortunately for Hawaii, the tsunami was only 2.5 feet high and there were no immediate reports of damage.  While the evacuation was a necessary precaution given the uncertainty in predicting tsunami wave heights, in this case residents and visitors were soon able to resume their normal activities.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

A Map for Every Story: Honolulu Council District VI Special Election

Will I be able to vote in the Honolulu Council District VI Special Election?

If you're blogging or writing an article on the Honolulu Council District VI Special Election 2012, here's a map for that story:

View Larger Map

You can embed this same map in your story using the HTML code in this file: