Since Katrina left millions in the dark and in trouble, developers have released a series of disaster apps that could get you through the Sandy hurricane.
Several media sources have turned their attention to disaster apps. Whereas Fox News presents a top 5 that should get you through a natural disaster, others look at the story from a different point of view: when disaster strikes, there’s no app for that, for instance. But, being prepared is taking into account anything that could make your life easier during a hurricane and any other natural disaster.
Although Twitter has become a national emergency news bulletin, there is more to your smartphone in time of need than you’d imagine. Disaster apps could really be useful, giving you information about the storm’s status or helping you ask for help.
The American Red Cross has a hurricane app that gives the user weather alerts from NOAA, a list of shelter locations close to him or her, information that helps you stay safe during the storm. Plus, you’ve got a fast “I’m safe” function that sends messages to your friends and family, letting them know you’re OK.
Life360 is a disaster app similar to that of the American Red Cross, as it also gives you a direct way of letting your family and friends know you’re alright. The app also lets your family know where you are by displaying your loved ones and your location on Google Maps. According to CEO Chris Hulls, there are more than 4.5 million families registered on Life360.
Red Panic Button is a disaster app that anybody in a risky area should have on their smartphones. Basically it’s like a beacon that sends your GPS and Google Maps location via e-mail, text message and Twitter to the person you have filled in as your emergency contact.
Plerts is a disaster app recommended by Mashable with a similar function to that of Red Panic Button. It features an SOS button which when you press it activates the app that gathers images, audio and your GPS location. Everything is sent to the people you have submitted as emergency contacts.
ReUnite is a great disaster app launched by the National Library of Medicine. Basically you upload info about people found or missing after a natural disaster and the app purges in the data to help find the person you are looking for.