Waze Data Empowering Hurricane Harvey & Irma Communities to Find Safety

Throughout Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, local and global Waze Community members worked diligently to keep Wazers away from flooded roads, en route to open & full gas stations, and able to find safety at the closest available shelters. Their dedication has been an inspiring example of what our community can achieve when working together. Now, as we consider Waze data collected before, during, and after each devastating hurricane hit, it's clear their hard work as paid off.

Hurricane Harvey 
Houtson was hit head-on with Harvey, displacing entire communities. On August 25th, the first day of the storm, people turned to Waze for more information; there were more than 2,000 searches for "help" from Houston-area Wazers. Thanks to the 24/7 work of the Waze Map Editor community, these searches successfully surfaced Waze Map pins for open, local shelters. Unsurprisingly, app usage declined while the storm moved slowly through the city, reaching the lowest point, 42% below the average of previous weeks, on Saturday, August 26th.*

The areas serviced in the Harvey Carpool launch.

On September 7th, we launched Waze Carpool for free across Harvey-devastated areas in Texas and Louisiana to help get Wazers safely back to their routines, one Harvey Carpool at a time. Immediately, we saw that Wazers across the city stepped up and offered free rides to their neighbors, friends, coworkers and more—a critical community effort after an estimated 1 million cars were lost in the Houston area alone. In fact, the day Harvey Carpool opened, active Waze users jumped 58% compared to previous weeks.** And just one day later, on September 8th, there was an all-time peak in miles driven on Waze in Houston: 5.3 million miles—56% higher than the August 2017 average.

Hurricane Irma 
Only a week after Harvey dissipated, Irma made its way toward the American mainland, with Florida as one of its biggest targets. As evacuation alerts were mandated on September 7th and active Waze users jumped by 50%, the Waze Community set out to help ensure Wazers were finding their way to safety on the best possible route.



While Wazers on the road actively shared real-time reports, including jams and accidents, Waze Map Editors worked hard to process road closures and add gas station information (including pricing and availability) as quickly as possible. With the Waze Community working together as a single, inspiring team, Wazers navigated more than 43 million miles across Florida on September 7th and 8th—a 48% milage increase vs. the previous 3 weeks. On September 8th alone, Wazers averaged 73 miles and over 2 hours of driving.

Beyond the Numbers: Wazers Share their Stories 
While our data certainly speaks to the incredible support the Waze Community has provided to those in need, nothing illustrates true impact better than personal stories shared by Wazers themselves. Here are just a few of the powerful, inspiring anecdotes that remind us of what our communities can accomplish when we all work together.

Wazer Chris


Wazer Debby



Wazer Jamie M.



Wazer Jamie S.





Sources:
Waze data August/September 2017.
Daily Active Users are defined as users who logged into Waze at least once a day.
*Peaks and vallets are compared to the previous 3 Saturdays.
**Peaks and valleys are compared to the previous 3 Thursdays.


No comments:

Post a Comment