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News18 » Tech
1-min read

Google Confirms AI Based Flood Forecasting Will be Available in India Ahead of Monsoons

The feature has been in testing since September last year, and will now be rolled out in more regions.

News18.com

Updated:May 8, 2019, 8:58 AM IST
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Google Confirms AI Based Flood Forecasting Will be Available in India Ahead of Monsoons
The feature has been in testing since September last year, and will now be rolled out in more regions.

Google has confirmed that the artificial intelligence (AI) based flood prediction system will be available in India before monsoons this year. The company announced this at the I/O developer conference. The artificial intelligence algorithms will be able to identify where floods are likely to break out and alerts people nearby. This is a part of Google’s new program called AI for Social Good.

The feature has been in testing since September last year. At the time, Google had partnered with the Central Water Commission to get the data they needed to roll out the testing for the early flood warnings. This was first done in the Patna region, and the first alert went out in early September after heavy rains lashed the region. Google says that 20 percent of global flood related fatalities happen in India.

“To help improve awareness of impending floods, we're using AI and significant computational power to create better forecasting models that predict when and where floods will occur, and incorporating that information into Google Public Alerts,” Yossi Matias, VP, Engineering at Google had said in an official statement at the time. The company believes that a variety of elements, including data from historical events, river level readings, terrain and elevation of a specific area, are all included in the machine learning models used to predict floods. “From there, we generate maps and run up to hundreds of thousands of simulations in each location. With this information, we’ve created river flood forecasting models that can more accurately predict not only when and where a flood might occur, but the severity of the event as well,” said Matias.

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