The Kenwood Press
News: 02/01/2018

SEC creates fire map

The Sonoma Ecology Center (SEC) is collecting your fire photos to help the community and researchers better understand how and why the Nuns, Tubbs and Atlas fires spread and burned the way they did.

To support this effort, the SEC has created the North Bay Fire Images map, a unique, interactive “citizen science” initiative that allows anyone to upload wildfire images into a single database.

Using geographic information systems (GIS) technology, this database, developed by SEC’s GIS Manager Alex Young, creates a “story map” online, allowing researchers and the general public to sort and view the thousands of images captured throughout the North Bay during the fires.

All members of the public with images taken during the North Bay wildfires between Oct. 8 and Oct. 30 are encouraged to upload them to North Bay Fire Images by going to Uploading the images is fast, easy and secure.

The crowd-sourced data will help scientific researchers and the general public grasp the devastating effects of the Nuns, Tubbs and Atlas fires.

“We all want to know what burned and what didn’t, and why. How did the weather, the buildings, and the vegetation interact during the course of the fires, to create the event we all just experienced?” said SEC Executive Director Richard Dale. “Now, with the public’s help, we can map the many images recorded in real-time during those fires. This will help us understand what happened, and how to prepare for it in the future.”