Esri, DigitalGlobe map California wildfires

October 12, 2017  - By
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Using live data from USGS and Waze, a new Esri interactive map visualizes active wildfire locations and traffic alerts for Northern California.

The map incorporates a new mapping technique to group traffic alerts at locations where there is a high density of alerts. This method enables faster and more effective visual analysis in areas where there are many alerts that would normally overlap.

Active fire data displays the locations of large fire incidents in Northern California. Data is provided by the U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service and The Geospatial Multi-Agency Coordination Group, and is intended to give near real-time understanding of the situation on the ground.

Location and status of active fires is updated throughout the day as new information is gathered by first responders.

Data from Waze is reported by users of Waze and updated every two minutes. This data, provided by Waze through the Connected Citizens Program, contains filtered data for affected area including system-generated traffic jams and user-reported traffic incidents (including jams, accidents, hazards, construction, potholes, roadkill, stopped vehicles, objects on road, and missing signs).

DigitalGlobe releases images of Northern California wildfires

DigitalGlobe has released high-resolution satellite images of the wildfires burning in Northern California. These wildfires have killed at least 21 people, destroyed at least 3,500 structures, and burned more than 115,000 acres.

The Oct. 10 images were collected using the Shortwave Infrared (SWIR) sensor on DigitalGlobe’s WorldView-3 satellite, which is uniquely able to pierce through the wildfire smoke to see where the fires are burning on the ground. For comparison, the ground and the fire line are completely obstructed by smoke in the natural color image of the same area (see the larger overview image on the first slide).

The Oct. 11 images were taken by DigitalGlobe’s GeoEye-1 satellite. Some of these are natural color, while others are shown in the Very Near Infrared (VNIR), where burned areas appear gray and black and healthy vegetation is red.

Additionally, DigitalGlobe has activated its Open Data Program, which provides imagery to support recovery efforts in the wake of large-scale natural disasters. Pre- and post-wildfire imagery of the affected areas are available to emergency responders on the Santa Rosa wildfires page.

Fountain Grove Golf Club in Santa Rosa, California, natural color. (Satellite image ©2017 DigitalGlobe.)

Fountain Grove Golf Club in Santa Rosa, California, natural color. (Satellite image ©2017 DigitalGlobe.)

Coffey Park in Santa Rosa, California, color-infrared. Santa Rosa, California. (Satellite image ©2017 DigitalGlobe)

Coffey Park in Santa Rosa, California, color-infrared. Santa Rosa, California. (Satellite image ©2017 DigitalGlobe)

The northwest fire line of the wildfire that devastated Santa Rosa, California, taken by satellite Oct. 10. (Satellite image ©2017 DigitalGlobe)

The northwest fire line of the wildfire that devastated Santa Rosa, California. SWIR image taken by satellite Oct. 10. (Satellite image ©2017 DigitalGlobe)

About the Author:


Tracy Cozzens has served as managing editor of GPS World magazine since 2006, and also is editor of GPS World’s sister website, Geospatial Solutions. She has worked in government, for non-profits, and in corporate communications, editing a variety of publications for audiences ranging from federal government contractors to teachers.

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