FEMA Chooses XMap to Help Process Flood Insurance Claims
DeLorme announced that it will be supplying its XMap/GIS Editor and XMap 4.5 software to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to expedite the processing of flood zone determinations. The XMap programs were selected by FEMA’s National Processing Centers in Hyattsville, MD and Mt. Weather, VA.
“XMap was chosen because it offered the right set of tools at the right price,” according to Michael Scott, Program Specialist at the FEMA’s Hyattsville office. We had previously used DeLorme’s Street Atlas USA for accurately locating addresses so when the time came to elevate our mapping to the next level, XMap was the perfect choice.”
Using XMap’s XData tool, the applicant addresses are accurately geo-coded against DeLorme’s award-winning digital street database. Digital Flood Insurance Rate Maps (DFIRMs), in ESRI Shapefile format, can then be imported and overlaid as a GIS data layer and an adjacent map window can be used to display aerial imagery of the area in question. This allows FEMA to quickly and accurately determine if a particular property is in a flood zone.
“One of the benefits of XMap” according to Mr. Scott, “is that it allows us to display all of the relevant data – flood zones, street maps, aerial imagery, and applicant addresses – on a single screen. Previously, after a major flood event, it would take us at least three weeks to perform quality control (QC) on the formerly mapped properties in a designated county; thanks to XMap the process now takes less than a week.”
Within each FEMA office, a data administrator processes the address information and the relevant flood data into XMap format using XMap/GIS Editor. This GIS data is quickly and efficiently shared with multiple users of XMap 4.5, DeLorme’s standard professional mapping software.
“FEMA’s adoption of XMap reflects a trend towards providing GIS data and tools to a wider segment of users throughout an organization,” said DeLorme GIS Specialist David McKittrick. “Many companies and agencies rely on a central GIS department to provide all of the necessary maps and spatial data. This type of structure can limit the number of people who actually have access to the GIS tools, for real-time usage. However, with XMap, critical GIS capabilities can be made available to key people throughout the organization, both in the office and in the field. Having the right tools in the hands of the people who need them is essential for any organization, especially those that need to respond effectively to emergency situations.”
About FEMA: FEMA is an independent agency within the Department of Homeland Security. Since its founding in 1979, FEMA’s mission has been to reduce loss of life and property and protect the United States’ critical infrastructure from all types of hazards through a comprehensive, risk-based emergency management program of mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery.
About XMap: DeLorme’s highly acclaimed XMap/GIS platform offers a powerful set of spatial tools that fit the technical and financial constraints of all organizations, regardless of size. XMap/GIS Editor offers full GIS functionality including access to existing GIS data, import and export of ESRI Shapefiles, data creating and editing tools, and Web publishing of GIS data. XMap 4.5 includes an array of standard mapping features as well as access to GIS data that has been processed in XMap/GIS Editor. Local governments, emergency responders, utility companies, and real estate and land management professionals are among the millions of satisfied users who are putting XMap to work every day. For more information, visit www.delorme.com/professional.