Company uses data collection for flooding efforts

With an online form, Lightship has given the Kelowna community an opportunity to provide feedback

One Kamloops company is making emergency resources for flooding efforts easier to understand.

Lightship builds live communications, mapping and data collection software. The software is used by several government agencies, including Emergency Management BC through a Build in Canada Innovation Program (BCIP) contract.

The company has played an active role during the flood season in the Okanagan and other parts of the Interior, having launched an initiative that empowers the public to help emergency management officials remove flood defences in a faster, more efficient manner.

By assisting in giving EMBC a complete view of flood defences, updated in real time, communities can begin to move on from a difficult spring.

A form set up by Lightship allows anyone from the public to mark a map with the flood defence’s (i.e. sandbag, inflatable barrier) location, add a photo and description, which is then sent to EMBC as a live update.

“By reporting this information, the public are lending their sight in the area. EMBC and local authorities can then combine this and other sources of information in real-time to get a comprehensive view of the clean-up needed,” said Lighship’s chief operating officer Dan Erikson. “The public’s help speeds up the process of completing this inventory, allowing local agencies to focus on returning affected communities to normal as fast as possible.”

As more and more submissions come in, EMBC gains a large view of flood defences and can make more informed decisions on which areas to focus on and track cleanup activity.