JONES COUNTY, Miss. – Maybe you have used Google Earth to explore the corners of the globe, or to get a glimpse at places you would like to visit someday. In Jones County, the emergency management department uses Google Earth in their own back yard to help keep you safe.
“We’ve used it for train derailments. We have used it when we went to help Covington County when they had an incident at the salt dome at the William’s facility. We have used it for major flooding events, tornadoes,” said Rodney Parker, Deputy Director at the Jones County Emergency Management Agency
Parker says they also used Google Earth to aid their search for a 30-year-old woman who had gone missing in over Labor Day weekend. He says search teams are able to relay GPS quadrants from their smart phone and pinpoint their exactly location into Google Earth. Unlike a typical map, Google Earth allows crews to get a visual on the terrain.
Parker says they also were able to utilize the Google Earth when they assessed storm recovery after the Sandersville Tornado. “At night you may pass by one road that looks clear, but a few blocks over if that area lines up with where your other damage has been across the area. You can start seeing areas where you need to go check on people.”