Tutorials / Guided use cases

Floods in Great Abaco, a consequence of Hurricane Dorian hitting the Bahamas Islands


Hurricane Dorian was an extremely powerful and devastating Category 5 Atlantic hurricane, that hit the Bahamas in September 2019 and is regarded as the worst natural disaster in the country's history. Low-lying and surrounded by water, the islands of The Bahamas are overwhelmingly susceptible to flooding and have difficulty coordinating relief efforts in the wake of storms. Abaco and Grand Bahama, two major islands of the Commonwealth experienced the catastrophic impacts of this hurricane.


Caribbean, Bahamas 


Natural disasters, Hurricane, Floods 


The climatic, topographic, demographic and disaster related data assessed through the combination of Earth Map and the Imagery Compare Tool show some of the impacts of Hurricane Dorian on the island, such as flooded area and its drivers such as erratic rainfall and low elevation.

Figure 1: Monthly precipitation and deviation (mm) from 1979-2019 (based on ERA5 Monthly aggregates - Latest climate reanalysis produced by ECMWF / Copernicus Climate Change Service)

Figure 2: Elevation Map (derived from Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) data).

Figure 3: Slope Map (derived from Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) data). 

Figure 4: Night light intensity (based on the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer from National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)).

Figure 5: Water occurrence 1984-2018 (based on the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre Global Surface Water Explorer).

Figure 6: Vegetation intensity in the northern part of the Great Abaco Island (based on Sentinel 2 - False colour mosaic (20 m, bands nir-swir1-red)). Orange represents high vegetation intensity; green low vegetation intensity and black and dark blue spots represent water. Above image in August 2019, below image in September 2019.