9:15 AM - 9:30 AM
[G04-02] A Global Multi-component Information System for Seismic Risk reduction
Keywords:citizen seismology, crowdsourcing, social media, crisis management, risk reduction, smartphone application
The information system comprises websites, a Twitter and a Telegram quakebot and a smartphone application. There are 3 key elements in the empirically developed strategy: relevance of provided information for potentially distressed eyewitnesses, rapidity and easiness to understand of key messages.
The relevance of the information is achieved by focusing on felt earthquakes, regardless their magnitude, the ones only detected by seismic monitoring networks being valuable uniquely to seismologists. Felt earthquakes are not identified through seismic data, but by the footprint left on Internet and social media by eyewitnesses looking for information immediately after the tremor. In practice, we independently monitor in real-time three variables: the number of tweets (i.e. messages published on Twitter) containing the keyword “earthquake” in various languages, the number of visitors on our websites, and the number of people launching our LastQuake app. Internet and social media act as the digital nervous system of our Planet and we detect the pulse generated by the online reaction to ground shaking.
These pulses of earthquake-related-activity lead to what is named crowdsourced detections which are typically within 15 to 90 s of earthquake occurrence and precede in the vast majority of cases traditional seismic locations. Crowdsourced detections are automatically published on the different component of the information system and eyewitnesses are invited to confirm them by sharing their felt experience. This proves to be an efficient engagement strategy working in all seismically active region of the world. Felt reports are collected through a set of cartoons depicting the different shaking level of the EMS 98 macroseismic scale rather than an online questionnaire. Visual communication is also exploited to provide timely geo-targeted safety tips to limit inappropriate behaviors in the minutes following an earthquake.
This talk presents the overall strategy and performances of the developed information system and illustrates how felt reports and eyewitnesses’ digital footprints can improve rapid situation awareness of global earthquakes and rapid public information at little cost. In turn, we advocate that improved situation awareness and timely geo-targeted safety tips contribute to global seismic risk reduction. Finally, we will explore the automatic fusion of crowdsourced and seismic data to fasten seismic locations and magnitude estimates.