Hurricane Katrina – Summary of Google Earth Resources

The GE Community helped create some very valuable resources for Hurricane Katrina Victims, for official organizations responding to the crisis, and for millions of people around the world interested in learning more. There have been many stories in the news about these efforts.

Here is a summary of the best resources available (list of resources maintained by Google at the GE Forums):

  1. Subject: NOAA Overlays Network Link
    Link: NOAA Overlays Network Link
    Description: Based on your current view (you have to be zoomed in), shows Katrina damage imagery for the main areas
  2. Subject: All NOAA Images (see this for details)
    Link: All NOAA Overlays
    Description:: Slow to load, and you have to click on each mark to open each image (large images), but most comprehensive collection of images and color coded according to date
  3. Subject: Locations of Katrina Red Cross shelters
    Link: Katrina Red Cross shelters
    Description: partial list (598 of 766) of the existing Red Cross shelters, their capacity, occupancy, and status as of Sept. 12th
  4. Subject: FEMA Damage Assessment 14 Sept. 2005
    Link: FEMA Damage Assessment 14 Sept. 200
    Description: Graphically shows damaged areas with color shaded regions. Includes flood coverage, damage areas by damage level, road/rail/bridge outages (Note: see this if you have graphics problems)
  5. Subject: 23 FEMA Disaster Recovery Centers, Sept. 10
    Link: FEMA Disaster Recovery Centers
    Description: Location of FEBA Disaster Recovery Centers

Dozens of users of GE volunteered their time to help put together valuable images of Katrina damage, Red Cross Shelter locations, and help many people who lived in the area determine whether their homes were threatened, damaged, or destroyed. In addition, the GE development team themselves put in many hours (especially over the Labor Day Holiday weekend) to create customized databases, network links, and set up massive servers to meet the demands around the world. Goolge maintains announcements about this information at this forum.

About Frank Taylor

Frank Taylor started the Google Earth Blog in July, 2005 shortly after Google Earth was first released. He has worked with 3D computer graphics and VR for many years and was very impressed with this exciting product. Frank completed a 5.5 year circumnavigation of the earth by sailboat in June 2015 which you can read about at Tahina Expedition, and is a licensed pilot, backpacker, diver, and photographer.


  1. Hurricane Katrina Summary of Google Earth R…

    Hurricane Katrina Summary of Google Earth R…

  2. tom ferguson says:

    Why was the FEMA response much more orderly after the OKC bombing than after Katrina. Was it due to the size of the Gulf Coast diaster or was it due to personalities?

  3. It was a tremendous hurricane that attacked them Hundreds of people were destroyed. Hope it will not happen again.

  4. What will happen to the future is unpredictable so we must be very careful and always be prayerful. Just a friendly reminder for all of us.

  5. It is I think the greatest natural disaster to ever strike the U.S., claiming thousands of lives when the storm surge caught the residents by surprise.

  6. That was epic. I still remember it.

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