Haiyan, by some accounts the strongest tropical cyclone to make landfall ever recorded, hit the Philippines on November 7th 2013 with wind speeds of up to 315 km/h.
The cyclone caused devastation in the country, particularly on the islands of Samar and Leyte, where estimates of fatalities range from 2,000 to 10,000 people in the city of Tacloban alone.
In the wake of the deadly destruction caused by the super typhoon, many international Search and Rescue (SAR) teams initiated response campaigns in the Philippines and travelled to the archipelago to assist its people and find survivors.
B-FAST (Belgian First Aid and Support Team), the lead Urban SAR partner of the ICARUS project, has also been mobilised to respond to the disaster by proceeding immediately to the affected area with two main missions:
- Setting up a field hospital to support 10.000 people over the next three months
- Deploying a water purification plant to provide safe drinking water to the population.
The SAR teams were not the only ones taking part in the disaster relief effort, as ESRI (Environmental Systems Research Institute), an international supplier of Geographic Information Systems software, which is also a member of the ICARUS consortium, published an interactive map of the area devastated by the typhoon, to support disaster relief agencies and citizens in their efforts to help affected communities in the central Philippines.
See the BFAST video: http://www.rtbf.be/video/detail_evenementiel-typhon-et-b-fast?id=1868617&t=151
Read more about BFAST: http://www.lesoir.be/358406/article/actualite/monde/2013-11-10/belgique-envoie-l-equipe-b-fast-aux-philippines
Read more about ESRI: http://www.futuregov.asia/articles/2013/nov/08/esri-publishes-web-map-super-typhoon-haiyan/
Interactive map: http://tmappsevents.esri.com/website/hurricane-responsive/index.html