RISE Challenge Winner, FloodMapp, Launches World-First Integration with Waze to Help Drivers Avoid Flooded Roads in Real-Time
NORFOLK, VA – RISE joins climate tech startupFloodMapp to announce the launch of a world-first integration of FloodMapp’s forecast flooding technology with the navigation app, Waze. Funded as a winner of the RISE Urban Mobility Resilience Challenge, FloodMapp’s innovative solution allows Waze to be the only traffic app to offer drivers real-time, street level alerts about flooded roads. FloodMapp is piloting the program in the City of Norfolk where Waze users will be the first in the world to test the new feature.
FloodMapp’s groundbreaking forecast technology mixes tidal, riverine and rainfall data to create a rapid, real-time flood inundation model. The information is automatically layered with Norfolk’s citywide road network in a geographic information system and sent to Waze in real time. Drivers receive pop-up icons and audio alerts to warn them about flooded streets along their route and help them avoid property and life-threatening hazards. Drivers can confirm flooding in the app, which helps validate FloodMapp’s technology and makes future Waze alerts more accurate. The information will also be used for an automatic rerouting feature, which is now under development.
“We are really excited to work with RISE and the City of Norfolk to roll out our product, and to help the people navigate around flood-affected areas,'' said FloodMapp CEO and co-founder Juliette Murphy. “We started FloodMapp because we have seen firsthand the devastation flooding causes, and we wanted to be part of a solution that helps people around the world.”
As the winner of the RISE Urban Mobility Resilience Challenge, FloodMapp received funding, business mentorship and access to the living laboratory of Hampton Roads, Virginia to develop and validate their novel solution. RISE, a Norfolk-based nonprofit funded through the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development, accelerates innovation and business growth around solutions to coastal communities’ critical resilience challenges.
“FloodMapp has created a live flood modeling system that has the potential to save property and lives,” said RISE executive director, Paul Robinson. “It is only through working with partners like the City of Norfolk who are committed to building flood resilience strategies, that we can advance innovative tools and help coastal communities worldwide adapt to the threats from climate change.”
“As our streets flood more often due to climate change, we need to find a sustainable way to alert community members about the risks they face,” said Kyle Spencer, deputy resilience officer for the City of Norfolk. “FloodMapp’s technology provides affordable, citywide situational awareness that current solutions, such as sensor networks alone, don’t offer.”
According to the National Weather Service, flooding and flash flooding combined are a leading cause of weather-related deaths in the U.S., and 58% of the 997 fatalities blamed on flooding from 2011 to 2020 have happened in vehicles. In Hurricane Harvey alone, 1 million cars were destroyed by flooding, resulting in up to $4.9 billion in auto insurance losses.
FloodMapp is on a mission to improve safety and prevent damage on a global scale. Its vision is to ultimately offer products in all countries that suffer from flooding, to help governments and businesses everywhere become more resilient to flooding and adapt to a changing climate.
FloodMapp’s products ForeCast, NowCast and PostCast are designed to support the emergency response before, during and after a flood event by providing street level, property specific flood intelligence at a national scale. This intelligence allows emergency managers to take targeted action to coordinate evacuations, prevent damage to assets, re-route traffic, and deploy recovery resources and funding effectively.
RISE is a U.S.-based nonprofit with a mission to accelerate innovation and business growth by identifying and scaling solutions to climate resilience challenges in coastal communities. Since 2018, RISE has deployed more than $5 million in financial support and services to 35 businesses with products designed to help coastal communities adapt to flooding, storm surge, and climate change impacts.
Waze is the social navigation pioneer, leveraging mobile technology and a passionate global community to redefine expectations of today’s maps. Waze is home to the world’s largest network of drivers who work together daily to outsmart traffic and save time and money. The app consistently recommends the fastest routes based on real-time driving and data from millions of users. From traffic reroutes to low gas price alerts and relevant offers from favorite brands, Waze is one of the most comprehensive driving companions in the marketplace.