Photo credit: Billy Lee

From October 13-15, OneEleven and Aviva Canada hosted the DisasterTech Hackathon, a 48-hour event that brought together experts from various industries to create innovative, technology-based solutions to mitigate the impact of natural disasters on urban communities. 

Thirteen teams were given an option of solving one of these three challenges:

  • Challenge 1: Create a technology solution that supports better real-time communication to the public advising them of important information during a disaster such as road closures, transit stoppages, flood areas, emergency support services etc.
  • Challenge 2: Create a technology solution that helps coordinate public volunteer efforts during a disaster. Volunteer activities may include transporting sandbags, providing fresh water and food, offering rooms in their homes etc. 
  • Challenge 3: Create a technology solution that helps the public to better prepare themselves in advance for natural disasters in order to minimize impact to personal property and wellbeing. Preparation may include waterproofing homes, preparing emergency survival kits, securing appropriate insurance, learning first aid etc.

Here are the results:

First place: Team PAJR (won $5,000)

  • Team PAJR tackled challenge 1 by creating an automated triage system that would be used alongside existing emergency phone line system
  • Team members: Paige Lim, Randy Cheung, Johnny Li, Anthony Ma

Second place: Team TBD (won $1500)

  • Team TBD tackled challenge 3 by addressing the lack of digital resources about disaster preparedness for kids, parents, and teachers and creating a tech solution that helps the public to better prepare themselves in advance of natural disasters called “Disasterforecaster” 
  • Team members: Blair Du, Allister Geonanga, Jessy Liang

Third place: Team DHR (won $500)

  • Team DHR tackled challenge 2 by creating Spaget2, a real-time volunteer recruitment task allocation app
  • Team members: Shuwei Wang, Christie Oh, Taeyong Kim, Tarun Kumar Singhal

Ownership of these solutions sits with the teams however, if you are interested in connecting with them to learn more, please contact OneEleven.

DisasterTech Hackathon partners included Agorize, The Canadian Red Cross, City of Toronto, Guidewire Software Inc., Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction, Toronto Hydro, Toronto and Region Conservation Authority, SAS Analytics, and The Weather Company, an IBM Business. More information on the event is available at the OneEleven page on Facebook.