While Tropical Storm Karen is continuing to weaken as it approaches land, it is never wise to ignore a storm of this size if you’re in the path. If you’d like to keep an eye on Karen using Google Earht, you have a few options.
While much of NOAA is shut down due to the U.S. Governmental shutdown, they’re keeping Karen-related information up and running. In fact, the KML that they provide (which you can download here) is an excellent tool for learning about Karen in Google Earth.
There are also some useful tools built directly into Google Earth. Under the “Layers” on the left side of your screen is an option for [Weather], which contains layers for clouds and radar imagery, among others.
You can also turn on the main [Places] layer on the left, which will reveal an icon in the Gulf of Mexico that can be clicked on to show more information about Tropical Storm Karen. Enabling a few of these layers will result in something like this:
If you come across any other useful tools for tracking this storm, please leave a comment below and let us know about them.
The team behind Google.org does some amazing work, and I was fortunate enough to meet a few of the people behind it when I was at the Where Conference last year. Learning more about what they do was eye-opening, and they continue to release valuable resources like the one we’re showing you today.
The imagery was captured on May 21, 2013, just one day after the tornado hit. It’s not the default imagery for the area, but if you simply fly to Moore and turn on the Historical Imagery layer you’ll see it. For a bit of help with that, this KML file will fly you there and turn on the historical imagery for you.
Thanks to GEB reader ‘Munden’ for letting us know about it.
As Google often does after horrible events like the tornadoes in Oklahoma this week, Google has created a Crisis Response Page to assist with the relief effort. The map includes a wealth of information including shelter locations, church and school closings, storm reports, a preliminary tornado track and much more.
Another source of mapping information is the BBC, which has a detailed map of the tornado, along with a variety of before/after pictures.
While the residents of Oklahoma will certainly value your thoughts and prayers, financial assistance is often the best way you can help. We strongly encourage you to donate to the American Red Cross to support their efforts.
The forecast models still aren’t in complete agreement, but it appears that Winter Storm Nemo could break some records when it hits the northeastern United States later today and tomorrow. It’s likely that many areas will see at least a few feet of snow.
As we’ve shown you in the past, Google Earth has some great tools to help track these kinds of weather events. To start, you can enable the “Clouds” and “Radar” layers under the main [Weather] layer to get a look at the current radar and satellite conditions:
The radar and cloud layers are actually positioned miles above the surface of the planet in Google Earth, allowing you to fly below them to see the original imagery. As a cute bonus feature from Google, if you fly below rain or snow you’ll actually see the precipitation falling when you’re below the clouds. Here is a screenshot with snow falling, though it’s hard to see when it’s a static image:
To get details for a particular city, simply enable the “Conditions and Forecasts” layer, then click the icon for a city to get a detailed forecast:
Of course, you can also view radar information on your favorite weather site, many of which use Google-powered maps (such as my personal favorite, the “WunderMap” on Weather Underground).
If you’re affected by this storm, we offer you our best. Stay warm and safe!