Smart, Albay tap Tudlo for disaster preparedness app

MANILA, Philippines – Smart Communications Inc. (Smart) is working with the provincial government of Albay and a tech start-up to customize a disaster and emergency mobile application to be used by the Albay Public Safety and Emergency Management Office (APSEMO) in its disaster management operations.

Called Tudlo (Visayan and Bicolano which means “to teach, to guide, to point”), the mobile app is a multi-purpose communications platform for disaster and emergencies. The partnership to develop the app was announced at the sidelines of an ongoing Workshop on Disaster Response held here by the GSMA Disaster Response Committee in cooperation with Smart.

Tudlo features relevant information on managing and dealing with emergencies and disasters; government bulletins and advisories; crowd-sourcing on on-ground situation; locator feature for evacuation sites; mapping for government agencies for easier coordination of aid and rescue efforts as well as emergency features that can be activated on the device. It can also generate situational analytics that can provide useful insights in future disasters and emergencies.

Tudlo will include new features based on the requirements of the province of Albay, which is known for its disaster risk reduction. The developers of Tudlo will use APSEMO’s wealth of information on disaster preparedness as a resource for the application.

An award-winning application, Tudlo was recognized as Best Community App during the Visayas leg of the Smart Developer Network (Smart DevNet) hackathon for social good last year and emerged as one of the twenty finalists in the first-ever national competition for the best tech start-up idea of the IdeaSpace Foundation, Inc. (IdeaSpace) which Smart is supporting.

“Communication before, during and after disaster and emergency situations is very important. This is specially so for warning and evacuation. Without good tools for communications, the overall setup of our operations will fail. Communications save a lot of lives. We’re looking forward to using Tudlo to complement our disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation tools.” said Cedric Daep, APSEMO department head.

“We’re basically connecting socially innovative mobile applications from the developer and start-up community to local governments, institutions and people who will benefit most in using these wireless technologies. It’s an excellent example of ‘apptivism’ or the use of mobile apps for social good.” said Ramon Isberto, Smart public affairs group head.

“We’ve been working on our app for the past year and Albay will be the first live case where we can study, test and further improve it. We hope that this will be used by more provinces in the country.” said Vince Loremia, co-founder of Tudlo, which is based in Cebu City.

The announcement was made in Legazpi City where the international workshop is being held to help the various groups share global best practices in the mobile industry. The first of its series, the seminar’s topic is Preparing and Responding to Earthquakes: Best Practices for the Mobile Industry. Attending the event are mobile operators, device manufacturers, government agencies and groups involved in disaster preparedness and emergency response.


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