Content Marketing Blog

Social media a lifeline in Hurricane Sandy

Social media sites helped to keep people connected during the hurricane, and now they are helping people to pick up the pieces in its wake.

The monster storm known as Hurricane Sandy, swept up the the east coast of the U.S., causing wreck and ruin with the cities of New York and New Jersey affected by flooding and power outages.

The New York Times have reported that the city's subway network – covering over 600 miles of track – may be closed for four or five days due to flooding.

"The New York City subway system is 108 years old," said Joseph J. Lhota, chairman of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, reported by The New York Times on October 30.

"It has never faced a disaster as devastating as what we experienced last night."

The city that never sleeps will truly have been brought to a standstill with the damage across the city.

Twitter campaigns have done their bit in the hurricane, helping people to receive important information from officials such as the Red Cross, even through the city blackouts.

Google also posted on their blog yesterday (October 30) that Public Alerts were available to use through Google Search & Maps on the browser or through Google Maps and Google Now for Android devices.

The Public Alerts provide warnings for emergency situations and natural disasters, and appear based on targeted searches like superstorm Sandy or location-based queries such as New York.

Important and relevant information such as crisis maps, evacuation routes and shelter locations are also provided in addition to the alert.

Facebook have weighed in on the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, reminding people on their blog that they maintain a Global Disaster Relief Page.

An interest list was also created by Facebook, collecting updates and resources from groups assisting with the recovery and state emergency agencies.

Alternatively, people are also able to visit the Facebook pages for the American Red Cross and the Federal Emergency Management Agency for updates on relief efforts.

The Facebook blog post also highlighted the top ten shared terms by people in the U.S. as of 10:00 ET, with 'we are ok' topping the list.

This was followed by 'power' (lost power, have power, no power), 'damage', 'hope everyone is ok' and 'trees' which rounded out the top five.

Posted by April Revake.