Floodmapp is a new tech startup offering intelligent flood alert solutions with a real-time flood mapping tool.
Created in a bid to improve safety and reduce flood-related damage, the tool is interactive, allowing users to zoom in and query whether specific properties and addresses will be affected, while offering real-time rainfall and river height updates, plus intelligent flood alerts with personalised messaging.
Founded by Ryan Prosser and Juliette Murphy in late 2016, initially it started out as a side project before they went full-time with their startup in January 2018.
As a water resources engineer, specialising in hydrology and water modelling, Juliette says the idea grew out of personal experience and it seems only natural for her to tackle the problem.
“I experienced flooding pretty badly twice within a short time frame - including the Brisbane 2011 floods,” she says.
“Then, two years later, flooding of a similar magnitude hit when I lived in Calgary, Canada. There were 75,000 evacuations and I had to take in five of my friends who had nowhere to go.
“In both floods, noone had enough understanding of where the impacted areas were going to be and they didn’t have enough warning time to properly prepare and save their valuables - so that’s where the idea came from.”
While engineering consultants do provide hazard mapping, Juliette points out that it’s not useful in real-time as a flood is actually approaching.
She also says that while the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) and early warning providers do a great job at the hydrology forecast, what many people find confusing is how will impact them and their location, specifically.
“The gap that Floodmapp is filling is going that extra step to offer real time hydraulic modelling to produce an inundation map of where the affected areas are, as it changes,” she says.
For farmers and business owners, this allows them more time to prepare and protect their livestock, machinery and other valuables. For mining and energy companies, they can stay informed to prevent lost production. And for insurers, they can properly understand where their portfolio might be affected so they can reach out to affected policy holders.