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How the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and AWS Competency Partner Abt Associates collaborated to determine life-saving investment priorities


The United States Army Corps of Engineers assesses flood risks with the support of Abt Associates. (image/Getty)

Content provided by Amazon Web Services (AWS)

By Grace Kitzmiller, Principal Product Manager, Disaster Response, AWS

This year, first responders demonstrated an incredible, ongoing commitment to public safety in the face of a pandemic, wildfires, and more. Hurricanes, and subsequent flooding, became more frequent and volatile because of climate change. We witnessed a record number of hurricanes form in a single season, including Greek alphabet storm names for only the second time in history, according to USA Today.

Unpredictable weather events pose a challenge for the United States Army Corps of Engineers, who work to reduce the impact of disasters. As the government’s leading agency for coordinating flood management activities, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers needed a way to assess flood risk and establish priorities based on set criteria. The potential for human exposure, emergency response infrastructure exposure, and asset damage are a few of the vulnerability metrics that influence the agency’s priorities.

With support from Abt Associates, an Amazon Web Services (AWS) Advanced Consulting Partner, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers solved this challenge with the National Flood Risk Characterization Tool (NFRCT). Abt’s NFRCT helps the Corps determine its investment priorities by providing relative risk levels for floods and other vulnerability metrics. The tool provides flood depth analysis and visually aggregates results by watershed levels for each of the Corps districts and counties. NFRCT combines three key datasets that help the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers strategically evaluate national flood risks to allocate their budget effectively and keep communities safe across the nation.

The role of technology in disaster response

Having the right technology is critical to achieving your mission quickly and safely with greater efficiency. You – and your agency – benefit from AWS Public Safety and Disaster Response Competency Partners like Abt Associates who are trusted advisors that enable you to adequately plan for disasters, mitigate risk and move faster in the event of an emergency.

With deep technical expertise and innovative solutions, AWS Public Safety and Disaster Response Competency Partners leverage the AWS Cloud to help agencies achieve key business objectives. AWS Competency Partners work with agencies of all sizes to turn complex, monolithic challenges into actionable insights that prepare and aid agencies in keeping communities safe.

AWS Public Safety and Disaster Response Competency focuses on your success

To achieve and maintain an AWS Competency, AWS Partners must undergo rigorous validation as well as an assessment of the security, performance and reliability of their AWS offerings and practices. AWS Competency Partners follow AWS best practices for architecting systems in the cloud, leveraging AWS to boost efficiency and support your mission. AWS Competency Partners demonstrate expertise in identifying, building and implementing technology that improves your organization’s ability to prepare for, respond to and recover from emergencies and disasters.

As part of a global network, AWS Public Safety and Disaster Response Competency Partners implement innovative solutions ideal for hazardous or sensitive environments, including leveraging the AWS Cloud where disasters degraded or destroyed internet access.

Unlike other programs based primarily on training, AWS Public Safety and Disaster Response Competency Partners demonstrate technical experience and proven ability to design and implement solutions that improve organizational capacity. For first responders, relief organizations, and law enforcement agencies, this means dedicated support to improve emergency response times and access to an advisor with deep knowledge in the field.

Finding confidence with AWS Public Safety and Disaster Response Competency Partners

Whether your organization is on the front lines of a wildfire or protecting your community on a day-to-day basis, AWS Public Safety and Disaster Response Competency Partners can help you achieve your goals. Embracing cloud technology to support your mission provides necessary relief to the people you serve. Learn more and find an AWS Partner who meets your needs.