The Pacific Disaster Center — an applied science, technology, and research center managed by the University of Hawaii — has recently renewed its partnership with live traffic camera video and data provider Vizzion.
The agreement is a continuation of the successful partnership between Vizzion and PDC to offer traffic camera feeds through PDC’s DisasterAWARE platform, an early warning and multi-hazard monitoring system. Designed to help disaster management practitioners make informed decisions and to provide situational awareness, DisasterAWARE features a wide array of tools and visualized information about weather patterns, active hazards, infrastructure locations, and population densities.
The platform supports users through all phases of disaster management, from mitigation and preparedness to response and recovery.
Traffic cameras provide hyper-local insight into current roadway conditions and how they are affected by extreme weather events and other hazards. This allows decision-makers to protect people and infrastructure in the affected areas, especially during conditions in which it is unsafe for them to physically reach the location.
PDC’s Global Operations Response Lead, Michael Chatman, explained how traffic cameras support the operational needs of disaster managers leading up to, during, and following major hazard events.
“Vizzion’s traffic camera technology helps PDC and our customers achieve more comprehensive situational awareness for routine monitoring as well as life-saving disaster response operations. The footage offered by Vizzion… provides disaster management and emergency response personnel with critical information about road traffic, contraflow, and ground conditions during all phases of response,” Chatman said in a statement. “This information shapes evacuation plans, public outreach about unsafe areas, and is a vital tool we can’t live without.”
PDC uses Vizzion’s XML Web Service to integrate 47,000 traffic cameras from across North America and Europe into their DisasterAWARE platform. Vizzion’s API allows users to retrieve camera data by region, bounding box, route, and other designations, and works as a powerful framework to display images and video streams directly in a variety of applications.
“Disaster management can be a literal life-and-death situation, so being able to rely on the data presented to you is crucial,” Vizzion account manager Sean Beaudoin said in a statement. “I’m proud to be able to say that PDC is using our camera imagery to help save lives.”
Through proprietary in-house image analysis algorithms, Vizzion is able to test each image before delivery to the end user, filtering out error messages, stalled image feeds, and camera failures to ensure that images accessed through the Web Service will be an accurate assessment of the ground-truth.
About the Pacific Disaster Center
For more than 20 years, Pacific Disaster Center (PDC) has supported the most demanding government customers and nonprofits worldwide, sharing in the mission to save lives and reduce disaster risk. As an applied research center managed by the University of Hawaii, we are continuously developing new technologies and best practices to help our many global partners effectively mitigate, prepare for, respond to, and recover from disasters. We work side by side with government agencies, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), and humanitarian relief organizations to conduct baseline risk and national disaster preparedness assessments, create mitigation strategies, support training and exercises, and to implement our powerful DisasterAWARE® technology.
Vizzion provides live traffic camera feeds from over 62,000 traffic cameras in 41 countries worldwide to automotive, mapping, media, transportation, and public safety applications. With authorization from more than 190 different national and regional agencies in North America, South America, Europe, Asia, Australasia, and Africa, and a network of on-vehicle cameras, Vizzion is the leading provider of traffic camera data and services. Traffic cameras are an up-to-date and accurate source of information for ground-truth and situational awareness. Vizzion has the capabilities to analyze images and automatically detect and notify users of hazards and dangerous driving conditions, such as poor-visibility.