Census Helps Communities Prepare For Emergencies

Nov 30, 2012, 12:15 PM

A new Census Bureau tool, OnTheMap for Emergency Management, was created to help prepare communities for an emergency. The tool provides information about the potential affected population size and characteristics of the people, such as age, occupation, and place of residence.  In an event like Hurricane Sandy, the tool was able to trace the path of the hurricane and update data predictions of potential impacts as the storm's path changed. Communities can use these statistics to know how many people live and work in an area where there is a disaster. Knowing these numbers and related demographics helps communities set aside resources and identify vulnerable populations that will need additional assistance, such as the elderly or disabled.

>>Read more about the OnTheMap for Emergency Management tool.

This commentary originally appeared on the RWJF New Public Health blog.