How to access and interpret info on flood-affected areas using Google alerts

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on August 14, 2020

Google India on Friday provided detailed insights into how users can effectively access and interpret useful information on areas impacted by floods using its alerts.

Google last year had launched its flood forecasting initiative in partnership with the Central Water Commission (CWC) to deploy public alerts to people in impacted regions across India.

Users can access important information about these flood-hit areas directly from their smartphone or desktop.


“These alerts provide timely, updated, and critical information that can help users make informed decisions on their safety and that of their families and friends. Any user in the affected region with an Android smartphone with location services enabled will receive these alerts,” Google said in its official release.

The tech giant will provide a ‘flood alert’ to users who have their location services on and are located in areas hit by floods on their smartphones.


Google currently provides these notifications in English, Hindi, and Bengali depending on the device language and location of users. “For example, a user in Bihar will get the notification in English and Hindi, while a user in West Bengal will get the notification in English and Bengali,” Google explained.

Users can also access information through Google Search. They can enter a query on a flood-affected area to see key information on the current situation in that region.

This information includes details on the severity of the flooding, a localised risk statement and an infographic based on in-depth information about the affected areas. It also provides location chips “to enable people in the affected area that people can tap to easily change the search results and get information on more specific locations in their search area.”

Colour-coded map

Where possible, it will also provide a detailed colour-coded risk map of the areas likely to be inundated with flooding.

“Clicking on this map will open a larger, more detailed view in Google Maps where you can zoom in to get a better understanding of water levels in specific regions. You can use this feature no matter where you are in India by searching for “flooding” and the name of an affected location on Search or Maps; it can be very useful to stay updated, especially if you have friends or family in the affected areas,” explained Google.

Published on August 14, 2020

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