PAST Fusion Cell Study of Emergency Communication During Hurricane Harvey Finds Social Media in the “Eye of the Storm”

Hanscom, Donald H., Jr.

Summary

A federal agency requested that Argonne National Laboratory facilitate the monitoring of social media platforms in support of the agency’s response to Hurricane Harvey, beginning August 25, 2017, as the hurricane bore down on the southeast coastal region of Texas, and continuing through September 1st. Staff from the Public Affairs Science & Technology (PAST) Fusion Cell actively monitored social media platforms, primarily Facebook and Twitter, for activity relating to the storm. The monitoring effort focused on the official social media sites for county/parish and city offices of emergency management, homeland security, and law enforcement agencies along the coast of Texas and Louisiana. The federal agency’s primary interest was the dissemination of evacuation or other protective action information via social media as Hurricane Harvey approached and made landfall. Click here for full report