Smart home technology is all the rage – especially as the population ages. But there’s another great use for this type of technology that uses smartphones to monitor everything from your home’s air quality to your health – keeping tabs on conditions in hurricanes.
Hurricane Humberto surprised meteorologists and residents alike by turning from tropical storm to hurricane when it came ashore in the middle of the night in June of 2008. I rode out the storm in a hurricane-resistant home on Bolivar’s Gilchrist neighborhood that shook and swayed in the high winds. With the electricity knocked out, my smartphone provided a lifeline to news, weather and island communications.
Coastal cities should take steps to ensure that connectivity is preserved even when infrastructure is wiped out in a storm’s aftermath – by burying wires, updating island wireless networks to 4G and placing online webcams in key locations.