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  • Annika Santhanam

Technology to the Rescue: Software's Role in Syria and Turkey's Earthquake Rescue Operations



On Monday, February 6th, a 7.8 magnitude earthquake hit Syria and Turkey, causing devastating damage and resulting in over 21,000 casualties. Rescue efforts have been ongoing in order to find any survivors, and a lot of these efforts have been punctuated by the growing use of technology to do so. Let’s take a look at a few different examples of startups and new technology that has helped first responders in this tragic situation.


Turkey - Earthquake Help Project

After the earthquake, Furkan Kiliç and Eser Özvataf immediately set off to form a team of 15,000 designers and developers from across the world in order to create software and apps that could help this situation. They named the group the Earthquake Help Project, which created several projects to deliver aid.


One of the first projects was an application that locates emergency calls on a map, allowing first responders to locate the people calling first responders. The map is formatted like a heat map, with spots colored in red having the highest concentration of emergency calls. You can take a look at the application here:


Additionally, at www.afetbilgi.com, users are able to find important emergency information to stay safe in the aftermath of the earthquake, including creating collections of accommodation and gathering places, food distribution centers, crucial phone numbers, and links to help the situation by donating stem cells or blood.


The Earthquake Help Project’s efforts have already helped to locate and save many people from the wreckage, and they are continuing to take on and assign volunteers to new projects. The group is also trying to see how they can expand to help the Syrian people as well and how they could translate their sites to other languages for the Syrian public.


Carbyne and Sight Diagnostics Technology Startups

Carbyne is an Israeli startup that was founded in 2014 by Alex Dizengoff, Yony Yatsun, and Lital Leshem. It has been working with law enforcement agencies in 120 locations across the globe.


The startup has been helping emergency responders gain live access to information including video feedback, as well as connecting first responders to medical experts in order to give the responders assistance necessary to aid survivors. Those who have been injured and rescued by dispatchers on the ground are able to be remotely aided by medical professionals who can give real-time advice and instructions through Carbyne’s video feed technology.


Similarly, the startup Sight Diagnostics is also providing medical assistance by facilitating inspecting patients possibly in need of blood transfusions. Its blood count device will measure 19 blood parameters to test if the patient is suffering from internal bleeding and requires a blood transfusion. The technology can also determine other damage, including possibility of infection or possibility of damage to organs. The device simply takes in 2 drops of blood and gives all of these results within 10 minutes.


All of these startups are using important technology to help the thousands of survivors in Turkey and Syria. Together, they are making important impacts in today’s world that are not only saving lives, but are setting the precedent for how technology can be used to aid the world in many different situations.



Thank you for reading and stay tuned for more articles!


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